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Rangers' Skole suspended 50 games06/29/2012 8:54 PM ET
By Andrew Pentis / Special to MLB.com
NEW YORK -- Jake Skole, the Texas Rangers' first-round Draft pick in 2010, has been suspended 50 games for violating the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball announced Friday.
Skole, an unranked prospect seen as a potential difference-maker, tested positive for a performance-enhancing amphetamine. After his appeal was denied, the ban was made effective immediately.
"It is what it is," Texas general manager Jon Daniels told MLB.com. "He made a mistake. That's what the system is for. He'll serve his punishment."
The 20-year-old outfielder was batting .185 with 11 extra-base hits and 18 RBIs in 68 games for the Class A Advanced Myrtle Beach Pelicans. He last played Thursday and was mired in a 1-for-37 slump at the plate that spanned a dozen games.
"It's probably affected his play overall the last few weeks," Daniels said. "He's struggled while it's been on his mind. That's the challenge for Jake -- to make the best use of his time on and off the field, physically and mentally. The talent is there. He's had a rough year between the lines, and this. This is an opportunity for him to get things right."
A native of Woodstock, Ga., Skole was named the Carolina League Player of the Week last May 29.
Skole also showed promise in his second pro season in 2011, posting .264/.366/.755 marks and stealing 21 bases in 124 games at Class A Hickory.
Skole became the 51st Minor League ballplayer this year to be suspended under the program.