Braves pitcher McKirahan banned for 80 games


NEW YORK: Atlanta Braves pitcher Andrew McKirahan has been handed an 80-game ban for violating Major League Baseball’s drug policy.

McKirahan, who is in his first season in the majors, tested positive for Ipamorelin, a performance-enhancing substance. The 25-year-old left-handed pitcher’s suspension starts immediately.

Unlike certain other players, who were suspended earlier this month, McKirahan is accepting his ban without any excuses and is asking fans for forgiveness.

“This is in no way a reflection of my character or morals,” he said. “I will work hard during my suspension and pray that everyone will find it in their hearts to forgive me.”

McKirahan, who was claimed off waivers from the Florida Marlins in early April, also apologized to the Braves.

“I am extremely sorry for letting down the Atlanta Braves organization, my coaches, teammates and the Braves fans,” said McKirahan in a statement released by the players union.

“I hope to have the privilege and opportunity to return to the Atlanta Braves later this season, to earn back their trust and to do everything possible to contribute to the success of the organization.”

McKirahan has appeared in three games for the Braves. He has allowed two runs in 4 1/3 innings. He had never pitched above Double-A baseball prior to this season.



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