Fox’s Jon Morosi reports that Major League Baseball is weighing what to do with Josh Hamilton in light of his relapse and that it is considering a suspension of “at least 25 games but less than a full season.”
That said, Rob Manfred is not close to a decision, Morosi reports, and that he and the league is mindful of the complexities of Hamilton’s addiction and wants to be “compassionate.” Specifically:
Manfred and other league officials have a favorable view of Hamilton’s efforts to remain sober, including compliance with MLB-mandated drug tests (three each week) for nearly nine years. He made five All-Star teams during that time, all while speaking honestly to baseball fans and the greater public about his struggle with addiction.
With the points I made about Hamilton and punitive action yesterday in mind, this nonetheless seems wise to me. Maybe not the suspension part — we’ll wait and see what that looks like and how it’s crafted before talking too much about that — but at least with the league’s consideration of Hamilton’s circumstances.
There is no rush here — it’s spring training and Hamilton is out of commission following surgery anyway — so there is no need to do anything immediately. Good for Manfred for not handling this like he would some minor leaguer who was busted for smoking some pot.