HomeMLB RumorsNoelvi Marte Receives 80-Game Suspension After Positive PED Test

Noelvi Marte Receives 80-Game Suspension After Positive PED Test

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The MLB commissioner’s office announced today that Reds infielder Noelvi Marte has received an 80-game suspension without pay after testing positive for Boldenone, a banned performance enhancing substance. “The Reds fully support Major League Baseball’s drug policy and its penalties,” the club said in a statement. “We will have no further comment.” Marte will be on the restricted list until the first 80 games of the regular season are completed.

Marte, 22, was one of several exciting young position players to debut with the Reds last year. An international signing of the Mariners out of the Dominican Republic, he was one of four players that came to the Reds in the 2022 trade that sent Luis Castillo to Seattle. He slashed .279/.358/.454 in the minors last year, earning himself a call-up in mid-August. He then hit .316/.366/.456 in his first 123 major league plate appearances while splitting his time between shortstop and third base.

Marte was coming into the 2024 campaign as a consensus top 50 prospect in the sport and set to be a key part of the left side of the Cincinnati infield. Instead, he will sit out the first half of the season while serving his suspension.

As mentioned, the Reds have been graduating a number of prospects to the majors lately and should have plenty of options to cover for Marte’s absence. Matt McLain can play either middle infield spot while Elly De La Cruz could play either spot on the left side. Jeimer Candelario and Christian Encarnacion-Strand can play the corner infield spots.

Spencer Steer can bounce all over the diamond but may end up in left field with the infield logjam, even without Marte. Jonathan India has been a second baseman for the most part but has been getting work at first and in the outfield due to the club’s bevy of infielders. Catcher Tyler Stephenson has some experience at first base. Even if Steer and India end up spending more time on the infield, the outfield still has TJ Friedl, Will Benson, Jake Fraley and Stuart Fairchild.

How the club manages their roster without Marte remains to be seen. For him personally, this figures to push back his free agency and perhaps his qualification for arbitration as players do not accrue service time while on the restricted list. He currently has 44 days of MLB service time but this suspension will prevent him from getting over the one-year mark in 2024.

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