MLB announced today that Kansas City Royals infielder Miguel Tejada was suspended for 105 games for testing positive for amphetamines. This is his second positive test this season. The 2003 AL Most Valuable Player is suspended effective immediately, and is reportedly considering retirement.
Given the events involving the Biogenesis scandal and the suspensions of players such as Ryan Braun of the Milwaukee Brewers and Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees, this could not have happened at a worse possible time for the Royals.
It is very unfortunate that a player who has been considered a leader for his current young teammates on the Royals could have his season and quite possibly his career end in this manner. One has to wonder how this will affect the rest of the season for the Royals, who had been playing extremely well recently and had become relevant again after many years of constant rebuilding.
This would have to be considered a serious blow to the psyche of such a young team. Tejada was a veteran who had been to the postseason and could definitely be a presence for the players on this team who are experiencing a pennant chase for the first time. Sometimes a player like this serves a vital role, and it could mean the difference between a team making it to the postseason and choking.
Although he was on the DL when this happened, an injured player is thought of a lot differently than a suspended player. The stigma attached to a suspended player is huge, and Tejada may have tainted whatever leadership credibility that he had forever.
Tejada is another example of Bud Selig and MLB taking a very serious stance involving the use of drugs in the game, and the league has made many significant efforts to deal with this problem as quickly as possible. It is potentially a sad ending to a great career and an impressive comeback, considering that Tejada did not play in the major leagues at all last season.
In this situation, the entire Royals team may have to live with the consequences of his actions as well.