NEW YORK -- The Office of the Commissioner of Baseball announced Thursday that former Major Leaguer and Rockies farmhand Mike Jacobs has received a 50-game suspension after testing positive for human growth hormone (HGH).
This positive test is the first of its kind in North American professional sports, according to the Office of the Commissioner, and violates the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program.
Major League Baseball began testing Minor Leaguers for HGH after an announcement by Commissioner Bud Selig in July 2010.
The Colorado Rockies have released Jacobs in the wake of the news, so his suspension will go into effect once he is signed by another Major League organization. Both the Rockies and Jacobs issued statements in the aftermath of the positive test.
"We were very disappointed to learn that Mike Jacobs had been suspended after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance," the Rockies said in a statement. "The Colorado Rockies have long been committed to eliminating the use of performance-enhancing substances from the game of baseball. We have fully supported the adoption and implementation of the Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association joint drug prevention and treatment program."
"A few weeks ago, in an attempt to overcome knee and back problems, I made the terrible decision to take HGH," said Jacobs in a statement. "I immediately stopped a couple of days later after being tested. Taking it was one of the worst decisions I could have ever made, one for which I take full responsibility. I apologize to my family, friends, the Colorado Rockies organization, Major League Baseball and to the fans. Now, as required by the minor league drug program, I will serve a 50-game suspension. After my suspension is completed, I hope to have the opportunity to continue my career in the game that I love so much."
Mike Jacobs has 100 career Major League home runs with the Mets, Marlins and Royals but has not appeared in a Major League game since April 17, 2010.
He had spent the 2011 season with Colorado Springs, where he hit .298 with a .376 OBP and .534 slugging percentage. He was leading the Sky Sox with 23 home runs and 97 RBIs.