Astros prospects Singleton, Deetz suspended

Houston's No. 24 prospect to miss 80 games for PED drug test

Dean Deetz and Jon Singleton both spent time at Double-A Corpus Christi last season. (Ben Sandstrom, Dave Michael)

By Danny Wild / | January 23, 2018 5:45 PM

NEW YORK -- Minor League first baseman Jon Singleton was suspended 100 games on Tuesday and fellow Astros prospect Dean Deetz was banned for 80 games after both failed drug tests, Major League Baseball announced.

The Office of the Commissioner of Baseball said Singleton tested positive for a drug of abuse for a third time and will serve his punishment at the start of the 2018 season. Deetz, the Astros' No. 24 prospect, tested positive for Dehydrochlormethyltestosterone, a performance-enhancing substance.

MLB said Singleton tested positive for a drug of abuse. Players who test positive twice under the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program receive 50-game bans, but the punishment increases after additional failed tests.

Deetz, who is on Houston's 40-man roster, was suspended under the Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.

Deetz, through a statement released by the MLB Players Association, denied knowingly taking any performance-enhancers.

2018 Minor League suspensions

"Let me say first and foremost that I have never knowingly taken a performance enhancing substance of any kind. I come from a small town and know how fortunate I am to call myself a professional baseball player. I would never jeopardize that opportunity or betray those who have supported me along the way by trying to cheat in order to gain an advantage."

Deetz said he wasn't sure how he could have failed a drug test.

"As I explained to the arbitrator in my appeal, I have no idea how I could possibly have tested positive and although I am disappointed with the outcome, I will abide by his decision. I would like to apologize to my family, friends, the Houston Astros organization, coaches, teammates and fans that have been impacted by this situation. I will continue working diligently to clear my name and, in the meantime, rebuilt the trust of those who have been affected by this result."

Dehydrochlormethyltestosterone is an anabolic steroid also known as oral turinabol. Blue Jays first baseman Chris Colabello was suspended for using the substance last April and Minor Leaguers like Kameron Loe and Daniel Stumpf also have been punished for using it in the past.

"Throughout our system, our players are educated through MLB's Drug Prevention and Treatment programs," Astros general manager Jeff Luhnow said in a statement. "Therefore, it is disappointing when any player is in violation of the policies that are in place. We hope that these young men will learn from this experience moving forward. The Astros will continue to fully support Major League Baseball's Drug Prevention and Treatment Programs."

Singleton, 26, spoke about his struggles with drug addiction in 2014.

"At this point, it's pretty evident to me that I'm a drug addict," he told The Associated Press. "I don't openly tell everyone that, but it's pretty apparent to myself. I know that I enjoy smoking weed, I enjoy being high and I can't block that out of my mind that I enjoy that. So I have to work against that."

Singleton, the Phillies' 2011 eighth-round pick, made his Major League debut in 2014. Last season with Double-A Corpus Christi, he hit .205 with 18 homers and 62 RBIs in 117 games. He last appeared in the Majors in 2015, going 9-for-47 with a homer and six RBIs in 19 games for Houston.

Deetz, 24, was the Astros' 11th-round pick in 2014 out of Northeastern Oklahoma A&M. He went 7-6 with a 4.25 ERA in 25 games, including 16 starts, last season between Corpus Christi and Triple-A Fresno, striking out 97 and walking 41 over 84 2/3 innings.

Danny Wild is an editor for Follow his MLBlog column, Minoring in Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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