J.C. Romero is currently pitching in the Phillies’ preseason camp in Clearwater, Fla. He’s getting in early preparation, but he’s going to have plenty of time to get ready for the season after his teammates have already started playing. Why? Because he’s due to serve a 50-game suspension as soon the season kicks off.
During the 2008 season, Romero tested positive for a banned substance. That’s not radical. What is stunning is his own defense, in which he says that the Phillies’ doctors cleared the supplements he bought from GNC and, to make matters worse, that he didn’t even realize Major League Baseball had set up a drug hotline for players to clear the supplements through. Romero’s blaming his suspension — which will cost him $1.3 million — on bad communication by MLB officials, and he may have a point.