Mariners' Cano gets 80-game ban, loses more than $11M in salary

By Alex Butler  |  May 15, 2018 at 3:13 PM
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May 15 (UPI) -- Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano was suspended for 80 games on Tuesday, after testing positive for the banned substance furosemide.

Major League Baseball said the suspension is effective immediately. Cano is currently on the disabled list after fracturing his hand in the Mariners' 5-4 loss to the Detroit Tigers on Sunday.

Furosmide is a diuretic better known as Lasix. It can help mask banned substances in urine tests.

"We were disappointed to learn today that Robinson had violated the terms of Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program. Our organization fully supports the program," the Mariners said in a statement. "Robinson made a mistake. He has explained to us what happened, accepted the punishment and has apologized to the fans, the organization and his teammates."

"We will support Robinson as he works through this challenge."

A post shared by Robinson Cano (@robinsoncano) on

Cano also issued a statement on his social media accounts.

"Recently I learned that I tested positive for a substance called furosemide, which is not a performance-enhancing substance," Cano said. "Furosemide is used to treat various medical conditions in the United States and the Dominican Republic. This substance was given to me by a licensed doctor in the Dominican Republic to treat a medical ailment. While I did not realize at the time that I was given a medication that was banned, I obviously now wish that I had been more careful."

"For more than 15 years, playing professional baseball has been the greatest honor and privilege of my life. I would never do anything to cheat the rules of the game that I love, and after undergoing dozens of drug tests over more than a decade, I have never tested positive for a performance-enhancing substance for the simple reason that I have never taken one.

"Today I decided to accept MLB's suspension. This was the most difficult decision I have ever made in my life, but ultimately the right decision given that I do not dispute that I was given this substance. I apologize to my family, friends, fans, teammates and the Mariners organization. I am extremely grateful for the support I have received during this process, and I look forward to rejoining my teammates later this season."

ESPN reported that the league was able to prove Cano was using the diuretic to mask a drug. Cano tested positive before the season. He appealed the suspension but later dropped the appeal.

A source told MLB.com that Cano has been tested at least once since the positive test result. Nothing showed up on that test.

Cano, 35, is hitting .287 with four home runs this season. He will lose his salary for the 80 games, an accumulation of more than $11 million. Cano was originally due $24 million in 2018.

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