Mar 29, 2011, 4:46 PM EDT
Ronny Paulino is ineligible to play in the Mets’ first eight games of the season due to a 50-game suspension for a positive performance-enhancing drug test dating back to last year, but now Anthony DiComo of MLB.com reports that the backup catcher could be out longer after recent blood tests revealed “stomach and colon issues.”
No further details about Paulino’s condition are offered, but obviously that doesn’t sound good. He’s scheduled for further exams and general manager Sandy Alderson said it’s “very possible” Paulino will be placed on the disabled list once he returns from suspension, leaving Mike Nickeas to back up Josh Thole.
It’s been a rough spring training for Paulino, who reported to camp nearly a month late due to visa problems in the Dominican Republic and has appeared in just seven games. He signed a one-year, $1.3 million contract with the Mets in December.
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