Minor league free agent Justin Dowdy suspended for refusing a drug test

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Here’s one way to avoid there being and errors or irregularities in the testing procedures:

The Office of the Commissioner of Baseball announced today that free agent Minor League left-handed pitcher Justin Dowdy has received a 50-game suspension after refusing to take a drug test, a violation of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.

The suspension of Dowdy is effective immediately upon his signing with a Major League organization.

Personally, I blame Ryan Braun.  Everyone said he and his lawyers have ruined testing. Well, here’s your proof!

OK, maybe not.

Anyway, Dowdy, originally drafted by the White Sox, was last seen in the Giants organization. He’s actually spent more time in independent leagues than he has in affiliated baseball.  And I’m guessing this is the last we hear of him.

Cubs sign Drew Smyly to a two-year, $10 million contract

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The Cubs announced on Tuesday evening that the club signed pitcher Drew Smyly to a two-year contract. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports the contract is for $10 million total and allows Smyly to earn another $7 million with performance bonuses. Smyly was non-tendered by the Mariners at the beginning of the month and became a free agent.

Smyly, 28, underwent season-ending Tommy John surgery in late June. He’s expected to miss, at minimum, the first half of the 2018 season. The Cubs are hoping he can contribute to a playoff push in the latter half of the season as well as in 2019.

Smyly didn’t pitch at all in 2017. When he was healthy the season prior, he made 30 starts for the Rays and put up a 4.88 ERA and a 167/49 K/BB ratio in 175 1/3 innings.