Mets reliever Jenrry Mejia suspended 80 games for PEDs

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MLB just announced that Mets reliever Jenrry Mejia has been suspended 80 games after testing positive for Stanozolol.

Interestingly, Mejia is the fourth player to be suspended for Stanozolol since late in spring training, joining David Rollins, Arodys Vizcaino, and Ervin Santana. He was placed on the 15-day disabled list earlier this week due to right elbow inflammation and can serve the suspension while he’s sidelined.

Here are statements from the Mets and Mejia, via Anthony DiComo of MLB.com:

Jeurys Familia is currently filling in at closer for New York, but Bobby Parnell is working his way back from Tommy John surgery and could get his old job back if he proves his health and effectiveness. Still, this is a tough blow for a team who has their eyes on contention. Per the updated PED policy, Mejia would not be able to play in the postseason if the Mets qualify. It will be interesting to see if the Mets consider signing free agent reliever Rafael Soriano. He’d be a nice fit.

Mejia, 25, posted a 3.65 ERA with 28 saves and a 98/41 K/BB ratio in 93 2/3 innings last season.

Pirates hire Ben Cherington as their new general manager

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The Pittsburgh Pirates have hired Ben Cherington as the team’s new general manager. They do so after the general manager meetings ended, but better late than never.

Cherington served as GM of the Boston Red Sox for four years, winning the World Series in 2013, but resigned during the 2015 season after Dave Dombrowski was named Boston’s new president of baseball operations. Which was a defacto demotionn for Cherington who, until then, had the final say in baseball decisions. Dombrowski, of course, was fired late in the season this year. Cherington went on to work for the Toronto Blue Jays as a vice president, but was seen as biding his time for another GM position. Now he has one.

Cherington takes over in Pittsburgh for executive vice president and general manager Neal Huntington, who was fired after a 12 years at the helm. Also fired was team president Frank Coonelly. Travis Williams replaced Coonelly recently. While the Pirates experienced a few years of contention under Huntington and Coonelly, they have slid out of contention in recent years as the club has traded away promising players for little return, all while cutting payroll. There’s a very big rebuilding job ahead of Cherington.

The first move he’ll have to make: hire a manager, as the team still hasn’t replaced Clint Hurdle since he was dismissed in the final weekend of the regular season.