NEW YORK -- Veteran Orioles infielder Rhyne Hughes was among three Minor Leaguers suspended Wednesday by Major League Baseball.
Less than an hour after the Commissioner's Office suspended Rockies catcher Eliezer Alfonzo, the league announced a trio of Minor Leaguers were also being disciplined. Hughes, Colorado right-hander Randol Rogers and Cincinnati righty Cole Green all received 50-game suspensions after testing positive for performance-enhancing substances.
Hughes, who turned 28 on Sept. 9, tested positive for an amphetamine. The three-time Minor League All-Star spent the entire 2011 season with Baltimore's Triple-A affiliate, Norfolk, batting .249 with 15 homers and 59 RBIs in 92 games. Originally an eighth-round pick by Tampa Bay in 2004, the designated hitter worked his way up the Rays' system, earning Southern League All-Star honors in 2009 with Double-A Montgomery. He signed with the Orioles in March 2010 and hit .258 in 104 games last year with the Tides.
Green tested positive for Methylhexaneamine; the substance, originally created as a nasal decongestant, has been found in dietary supplements and workout products under various names in recent years.
Green was the Reds' ninth-round pick out of Texas this June after being named the Big 12 Pitcher of the Year in 2010, when he finished 11-2 with a 2.74 ERA for the Longhorns. He was previously drafted by the Tigers in the fourth round of the 2010 Draft.
The 24-year-old spent the season at Rookie-level Billings, finishing 4-1 with a 4.24 ERA in 10 outings, including five starts. He also pitched one inning for the Arizona League Reds.
Rogers, 18, tested positive for Boldenone, an anabolic steroid initially developed for veterinary use. The 6-foot-3 righty appeared in five games for Colorado's Dominican Summer League club this year, allowing nine runs in 5 2/3 innings in his first season with the organization.
All three suspensions will be effective at the start of next season.
Earlier in the day, Alfonzo became the first player to receive a 100-game suspension for a second positive test under Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, the Commissioner's Office announced.
As of Wednesday, 59 players have been suspended in 2011 under the Minor League drug program, including eight this month.