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braves-prospects-suspended-for-steroid-use-2 | April | 2005 Articles

2005 Archives

Braves Prospects Suspended for Steroid Use

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From No Pepper: James Jurries (1B, AAA Richmond) and Ricardo Rodriguez (P, High-A Myrtle Beach) are the first two Braves to be caught in MLB's steroids crackdown. Both are first-time offenders, so their suspension is 15 games. Both players admitted the mistake rather than copping out with the "I didn't know what I was taking" excuse, and reportedly received the illegal substance while playing winter ball in Venezuela this past offseason. (The Richmond Times-Dispatch takes a much deeper look at Jurries, which helped preserve my respect for him.) In 11 games at Richmond, Jurries was 12-for-38 with two doubles, five homers, four walks, and 13 RBI (.316/.372/.763 -- 1.135 OPS). Jurries was player of the year for Greenville (AA) in 2003. In 11 1/3 innings over four games for Myrtle Beach, Rodriguez was sporting a 1-0 record and 1.59 ERA with 19 strikeouts to only one walk and eight hits allowed. He had held league batters to a .195 average. Dayton Moore, the Braves' director of player personnel, said the Braves are going to stick with Jurries and Rodriguez: "We're not going to turn our back on them. We'll support them. At the same time, there's consequences for your actions. We'll continue to educate our players. Hopefully, they'll hear us a little louder and clearer and it hits home." The Braves will re-evaluate them after they've served their suspensions. Expect more in about two weeks.

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