FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Red Sox pitcher Steven Wright has been suspended for 80 games for violating baseball's joint drug agreement. Wright tested positive for Growth Hormone Releasing Peptide 2, which is classified as a performance-enhancing drug.
Wright will be eligible to return June 24 but will also be ineligible for the postseason.
He appealed the results of the test but was informed Tuesday night that his appeal was denied. Wright said he told the Red Sox last week that he had failed the test -- administered in the offseason -- and that a suspension was a likely outcome.
Wright is the first Red Sox player to be suspended under the major league portion of the testing program since it began in 2004. Others have been suspended in the minor leagues, including Michael Chavis last April.
"It's unfortunate,'' said Wright. "I never thought it would ever come down to this, but I respect the joint drug treatment program and unfortunately, we couldn't figure out how this particular substance got into my system and at the end of the day, it falls on me to try to prevent that. Unfortunately, some way it got into my body and I don't know how. But it is what it is and I just have to try to move on from it.
"At the end of the day, it falls on me. Even if I could figure out how it got into my system, it falls on my to try to prove that it was unintentional. Unfortunately, I can't because I don't know where it came from. I respect the program; I think it's a great thing for the game. I'm just going serve the suspension and try to utilize the time off to try to get healthier.''
Said Alex Cora: "Obviously disappointed, but we'll give the player the support that he needs. He's still part of the organization. That's all I can say about it. You never think about it, but it is what it is. We just have to turn the page, give him the support he needs and move on.''