The following is a sentence I never thought would be written in the history of the world.
Freddy Galvis has been suspended 50 games by Major League Baseball after testing positive for a performance enhancing drug.
Surely everyone can see the humor, and extreme irony, in a .226 hitter testing positive for steroids, right? Right?
Yes, just when it seemed the Phillies’ 2012 death spiral couldn’t get any more ridiculous, Freddy Galvis has gone ahead and made things downright laughable.
The drug in question is called Clostebol, a weak anabolic steroid that was used by the East German athletes during the Cold War and is still popular with some Brazilian athletes.
Galvis, on the disabled list with a broken back (technically it’s called a pars fracture, but that sounds really girly), released a statement through the team.
“A trace amount of a banned substance – 80 parts in a trillion – was detected in my urine sample. I am extremely disappointed in what has transpired. I cannot understand how even this tiny particle of a banned substance got into my body. I have not and never would knowingly use anything illegal to enhance my performance. I have always tried to follow the team’s strength and conditioning methods, listen to the trainers, work out hard and eat right. Unfortunately, the rules are the rules and I will be suspended.
“I’d like to apologize to my all my fans, especially here in Philadelphia and back home in Venezuela, to my teammates and to the Phillies organization. I am looking forward to putting this behind me, rehabilitating my back and returning to the Phillies as soon as possible to try to help them win another World Series.”
General Manager Ruben Amaro also addressed Galvis’ positive test, saying “It’s disappointing but in these situations we fully support the program and [MLB's] decision and at the same time we support the player and we just want him to get healthy and get back on the field for us.”
The 22-year-old Venezuelan, in 58 games filling in for the rehabbing Chase Utley, hit .226 with 3 HRs, 15 doubles and 24 RBIs all while displaying terrific defense. The small piece of good news is that he may be able to start serving his suspension while on the DL, which would be a small break for the Phils.
Still, this is just another kick in the crotch in a season filled with one knee to the groin after another. The Phils also announced on Tuesday that David Herndon would undergo Tommy John surgery, and that reliever Michael Stutes might need surgery on a right shoulder that is simply not progressing. Laynce Nix also suffered a small setback in his attempt to return from a calf injury, saying he felt it tweak while running the bases.
There is good news, though. There is no truth the rumor I just made up that Phils’ shortstop Jimmy Rollins has tested positive for a performance decreasing drug. It’s simply how he plays now.
So, with this news about Freddy Galvis tucked under our shoulders like a crisply folded newspaper, let us gird ourselves for the inevitable news that Ryan Howard murdered a transient in Clearwater this week or that Chase Utley has contracted that flesh eating bacteria that’s going around. Because really, that’s the only way things could get any worse.