New York Mets closer Jenrry Mejia was suspended for 80 games by Major League Baseball on Saturday for testing positive for Stanozolol, the latest pitcher to be caught with that performance enhancing drug.
Mejia, 25, saved 28 games for the Mets in 2014, putting up a 3.65 ERA in 63 games, including seven starts, with 98 strikeouts and 41 walks in 93⅔ innings. He hasn't pitched yet this season.
"I know the rules are the rules and I will accept my punishment, but I can honestly say I have no idea how a banned substance ended up in my system," Mejia said in a statement. "I have been through a lot in my young career and missed time due to injury. I have worked way too hard to come back and get to where I am, so I would never knowingly put anything in my body that I thought could hold me out further."
Mejia has a $2.595 million salary for 2015. Getting suspended for 80 games means he will forfeit roughly $1,134,426 in salary this season. Mejia earned $509,675 with New York in 2014.
"We were disappointed when informed of Jenrry's suspension for violating Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program," the Mets released in a statement. "We fully support MLB's policy toward eliminating performance enhancing substances from the sport. As per the Joint Drug Program, we will have no further comment on this suspension."
The earliest Mejia could return to the Mets is July 7.