Robinson Cano and Melky Cabrera weren't just teammates with the Yankees.
They were best friends.
And that made it even harder for Cano, who was "100 percent surprised" when he heard the news that Cabrera, now with the San Francisco Giants, had been suspended 50 games for violating Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Treatment and Prevention Program.
"It's really sad. He's having a great year," Cano said of Cabrera, who tested positive for testosterone. "But I'm his friend and I'm gonna be there for him."
Cabrera, 28, who was named MVP of the All-Star Game and ranked second in the majors with a .346 batting average, addressed the situation in a statement.
"My positive test was the result of my use of a substance I should not have used. ... I am deeply sorry for my mistake," Cabrera said.
"I saw where he made a statement; that is always a good first step and sometimes the hardest," said Alex Rodriguez, who has admitted taking a banned substance while playing for the Texas Rangers.
"I think he has an opportunity, being a young player. With that said, it is also going to be a challenge. I hope that he takes the bull by the horns and does some great things. I'm a believer and a friend. In times like this, I will definitely not turn my back and I'm here to support him."
Joe Girardi, Cabrera's former manager in New York, called the news disappointing.
"Obviously Melky means a lot to all of us and was part of our (2009) championship," Girardi said. "He provided some really good moments here, and it's something that everyone has to deal with and it's something that baseball is trying to stay away from, but it happened."
Derek Jeter said he was surprised.
"That goes without saying," Jeter said. "He was a great teammate. I enjoyed being around him, playing with him and seeing him get better. It's too bad."
Cabrera played four seasons in New York (2006-09) before being traded to Atlanta for Javier Vasquez.