Former big league pitcher Joel Pineiro has received a 50-game suspension after testing positive for a banned stimulant in violation of the minor league drug prevention and treatment program, the commissioner's office announced Monday.
Pineiro tested positive for the stimulant heptaminol, according to an announcement by Major League Baseball.
Pineiro apologized Monday night in a statement released through his attorney, Jon Fetterolf, of Zuckerman Spaeder.
"I have never taken a performance-enhancing drug, but I take full responsibility for what has happened,'' Pineiro said. "The positive test was a result of taking a commercially available supplement to aid in recovering from the shoulder injury and subsequent surgery that caused me to miss most of the 2012 and 2013 seasons. I took this supplement for the first time shortly before the start of the 2014 season, and now realize that supplement contained a trace amount of a banned stimulant.
"I made a terrible mistake by not carefully checking the ingredients of the supplement and offer my sincere apology to everyone I let down -- the league, my teammates, fans, and especially my family. Although I did so unintentionally, I accept that I violated the league's rules and will not appeal the suspension. Over the next several months, I am going to do everything I can to earn the trust of this league and get back to the game I love. I look forward to pitching again in 2015.''
Pineiro, 35, is 104-93 with a 4.41 ERA over 12 career seasons with the Seattle Mariners, St. Louis Cardinals, Boston Red Sox, Los Angeles Angels, Philadelphia Phillies, Baltimore Orioles and Chicago Cubs. He last pitched in the majors with Los Angeles in 2011.
His best stretch came in 2002 and 2003, when he logged a 30-18 record as a member of the Mariners' rotation.
The Cubs signed Pineiro in late March but released him earlier this month after he struggled with their Double-A Southern League affiliate in Tennessee. Pineiro signed with Los Angeles on June 7, but the Angels released him after he posted a 7.48 ERA and allowed 36 hits in 21 2/3 innings with Salt Lake in the Triple-A Pacific Coast League.