Mejia becomes the first major or minor league player to receive a permanent suspension under MLB's drug program. Texas Rangers outfielder Josh Hamilton , then in the minor leagues, was suspended several times for drugs of abuse from 2003-05 but was allowed to return each time. During a time when there was not a drug agreement, Steve Howe was suspended for life by Commissioner Fay Vincent in 1992 after the pitcher's seventh drug- or alcohol-related incident. Arbitrator George Nicolau said doctors concluded Howe suffered from attention deficit hyperactive disorder and cut the suspension to time served, which was 119 days.
Except for Rodriguez, it will never be over. His steroid-stained past will probably keep him out of the Hall of Fame. Rather than accept responsibility, he consistently shifted blame over the years or lied about PED use. When the end of his career was near, however, he finally changed his tune, telling reporters last week at his locker in the Citi Field visiting clubhouse that, “I’ve made more mistakes than anybody.” He also invoked a version of Lou Gehrig’s famous speech when asked if he felt he had been put in a bad position for the 2016 season. “I’m one of the luckiest human beings on the planet,” said Rodriguez.