Triple-A pitchers P.J. Francescon and Joseph Colon were each suspended 50 games after testing positive for a drug of abuse a second time. Both are former Midwest Leaguers.
Francescon pitched for the Peoria Chiefs in 2011 and 2012. In 26 appearances, he went 6-5 with a 2.66 ERA, two saves, 82 strikeouts and 21 walks in 88 innings. The Chicago Cubs farmhand spent most of the 2015 season in Double-A before finishing in Triple-A.
Colon spent most of the 2012 season with the Lake County Captains, and pitched briefly for the team in 2011 and 2013. He cumulatively went 8-9 with a 2.99 ERA, 85 strikeouts and 36 walks in 126.1 innings (22 starts). The Cleveland Indians farmhand split the 2015 season between Double-A and Triple-A.
According to MiLB.com, “[p]layers are typically issued a warning following a first positive test for a drug of abuse and a suspension for a second offense. Substances considered ‘drugs of abuse’ by Major League Baseball include cocaine, marijuana, heroin, LSD, ecstasy and other opiates. Minor Leaguers who test positive for a performance-enhancing substance are subject to an immediate 50-game suspension.”
The suspensions, announced Friday, are the first ones handed down this year for violations of baseball’s drug policy.