The Phillies have already made it known that they have little desire to re-sign veteran lefty Jamie Moyer this offseason. But it might not matter anyway.
According to Dionisio Soldevila of Tiempo de Juego, Moyer suffered an injury to his throwing elbow while pitching Saturday in the Dominican Winter League. It’s the same injury that cost him half of the 2010 season and now it might cost him his career.
Moyer had a nice 4.84 ERA and 1.10 WHIP in 19 starts this past season for Philadelphia, but he will turn 48 later this month and he might not be back to full health by the start of spring training. Even if he is, there’s a good chance that his elbow will blow out again in 2011 and few MLB teams will want to risk a guaranteed contract on the veteran.
If Moyer truly wants to continue pitching, a minor league deal with no guaranteed roster spot might make sense. He currently boasts a 267-204 career win-loss record, 2,405 career strikeouts and a 4.24 career ERA.
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reports that, as part of MLB and the MLBPA’s recent agreement on a treatment program for opioids, the league will also remove marijuana from the list of banned substances for minor leaguers. As Rosenthal notes, major league players aren’t tested for marijuana but minor leaguers are.
Though the use of medicinal marijuana has been decriminalized in most of the U.S., the drug remains illegal at the federal level. It is classified as a Schedule I drug along with other substances such as heroin, peyote, and ecstasy.
It is great to see the league being forward-thinking on this particular issue. The messaging on marijuana has, for decades, been misleading. As a result, the drug grew a reputation it didn’t deserve. In this day and age, many players use or have used the drug without it having a major impact on their lives. In many cases, the impact is positive. Former Astros first baseman Jon Singleton remains a well-known outlier. Furthermore, testing for and thus having to punish players for the use of marijuana removes any incentive for the player to be honest and seek help if the drug impacts their lives negatively. This, along with the opioid program, hopefully results in players feeling comfortable enough to seek the help they need if they need it.