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Freddy Galvis gets 50-game PED suspension

Jun 19, 2012, 5:12 PM EDT

Freddy Galvis Getty Images

Apparently, he’s the new Manny Alexander.

Injured Phillies infielder Freddy Galvis was suspended 50 games Tuesday after testing positive for Clostebol, a performance-enhancing substance.

In a statement, Galvis claimed that “a trace amount of a banned substances — 80 parts in a trillion — was detected in my urine sample” and that he’d never knowingly take a banned substance. He apologized to “all of my fans, especially here in Philadelphia and back home in Venezuela, to my teammates and to the Phillies organization.”

Taking over as the Phillies’ starting second baseman with Chase Utley out, Galvis was hitting .226/.254/.363 with three homers and 24 RBI in 190 at-bats when he suffered a back injury earlier this month. The injury was later diagnosed as a fractured vertebra and was expected to sideline Galvis for at least another month, if not for most of the rest of the season.

Galvis will be able to serve his suspension while on the disabled list, so it might not actually cost him any additional time. It will cost him about $150,000 in salary, though.

While Galvis’ offensive production was modest, it was still a somewhat pleasant surprise given his history. He had 19 extra-base hits in 190 at-bats for the Phillies, an average of one every 10 at-bats. In his four minor league seasons, he averaged one extra-base hit every 19.6 at-bats. His 15 doubles led the Phillies at the time of his injury.

Update: The Phillies have released a statement:

The Phillies continue to believe in and endorse Major League Baseball’s drug policy. We also support Freddy Galvis in his determination to put this matter behind him and we look forward to his return as a productive member of the Phillies as soon as possible.

After the suspension was announced, Galvis tweeted, in Spanish, about turning the page:

  1. phillyphever - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:20 PM

    Yep, it’s been that kind of season for us this year. Surprised the picture of Galvis doesn’t have a dunce cap on his head.

    • laeaglefan - Jun 19, 2012 at 7:30 PM

      Galvis did show surprising power for a skinny little guy. One has to wonder if those PEDs had anything to do with that. But you have to figure that with the kind of year the Phillies have had, nothing should come as a shock anymore.

      • flcounselor - Jun 20, 2012 at 3:42 PM

        Yes, a shocking 3 home runs, with a majestic .363 slugginf percentage. Can you say, McGwire-esque?

        I wish those of you who love to write judgmental screeds against steroids would just quit making stuff up.

  2. chill1184 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:22 PM

    Philly’s misery continues and I couldn’t be happier!

    • drmonkeyarmy - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:24 PM

      Taking pleasure in the misery of others is the hallmark of sociopathic, sadistic bastards. Just an FYI.

      • b7p19 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:30 PM

        Haha, riiiight.

      • chill1184 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:33 PM

        No I’m not a congresscritter but I appreciate the sentiment though

      • Francisco (FC) - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:59 PM

        Don’t pay attention to haters Doc. It just means they’re jealous of your team’s recent success. After all, who expresses happiness with the woes of the likes of the Pirates?

    • drewsylvania - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:27 PM

      I was about to flame him…until I realized I’d say the same thing about the Habs.

      • b7p19 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:33 PM

        Not a sports fan in the world that doesn’t root against rival teams or teams that have been on a good run of success. Of course you could have gone the sociopathic, sadistic bastard route.

    • drewsylvania - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:44 PM

      We all love our schadenfreude.

  3. mall0215 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:24 PM

    The PED damn sure didn’t help with his hitting.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:26 PM

      Sad thing is…. it probably did.

  4. drewsylvania - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:24 PM

    Where was his sample kept?

  5. captainwisdom8888 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:25 PM

    As a saddened Phils fan, I lacked any hope coming into this season anyway so I can’t say I’ve been crushed by the lack of success. I don’t believe there is even a future left for Utley or Howard in Philly when they get back…they are both a shade of their former selves. Young talented players are needed asap…

  6. greymares - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:29 PM

    80 parts in a TRILLION was found sounds like cough medicine.

    • ewyorksockexchange - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:43 PM

      really, is there some kind of minimum threshold the amount of banned substance has to cross before MLB will suspend people? I normally don’t buy the tainted meat excuse, but with an amount this small it’s entirely possible he was drinking the wrong chinese apple juice.

      • drmonkeyarmy - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:47 PM

        There is always a minimum threshold in drug screening/testing. No idea what it is for this substance according to the stringent guidelines set forth by MLB. Also, no idea whether 80 parts per trillion of this particular substance is a lot and in what ways it can be introduced into the human body. I do know that a Mexican soccer team all tested positive for the mentioned substance and tainted chicken was determined to be the cause. So, who the hell knows.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:24 PM

        is there some kind of minimum threshold the amount of banned substance has to cross before MLB will suspend people

        Yes, it’s how BALCO worked because they knew MLB just tested the ratio of epitestosterone to testosterone (if the sample was > 4:1, it was a fail), but they didn’t test the exact amounts. So they’d boost the epi amount to like 24 times normal and boost the testosterone amount to 6x normal, it’d still maintain the 4:1 ratio, but your head would grow to the size of a small child.

        [note, probably got the order of hormones(?) wrong, but you get my point]

  7. b7p19 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:36 PM

    Lets just hope the guy carrying the sample didn’t stop for lunch on the way to the lab…

  8. Jonny 5 - Jun 19, 2012 at 5:44 PM

    Wow! Well there goes those his hof chances.

  9. wrg885 - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:00 PM

    OOffff. Signed, every Phillie/scrappy player fan

    • CJ - Jun 19, 2012 at 8:16 PM

      I thought this site already established you had to be white to be scrappy?

  10. jwbiii - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:25 PM


  11. natstowngreg - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:26 PM

    When it comes to the Phillies, we Nats fans have as much reason to love our schadenfreude as anyone. But I think I’ll leave the glaoting to the more sadistic portion of our fan base.

    The idea this season was for the Phillies to have one last contending run and the Nats to position themselves to pass the Phillies next season. It was also about the Nats beating the Phillies while they still had their championship nucleus. Sort of a changing of the guard thing. That changing of the guard seems to be happening a season early.

    • drmonkeyarmy - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:38 PM

      What defines “championship nucleus” to you? I’m not saying that the Nats aren’t playing great because they clearly are and have been bitten by their fair share of injuries. I’m just saying that the Phillies are a depleted team with their “championship nucleus” spending more time on the DL then actually on the field. Probably more time on the DL considering that Howard and Utley have yet to play a meaningful game. For heaven’s sake, they fielded an infield of Hector Luna, Mike Fontenot, Rollins, and Ty Wiggington at one point.

      • laeaglefan - Jun 19, 2012 at 7:33 PM

        Throw Michael Martinez into the mix and you’ve got a real All Star infield there.

      • natstowngreg - Jun 19, 2012 at 11:53 PM

        Start with Utley, Howard, Polanco. Halladay wasn’t part of the 2008 championship team, but he was part of the 2011 championship contenders. Just losing them is a huge hit. There’s no question that the Phillies have been devastated by injuries.

        My point is, this is an aging team. Before this season, I thought they had another run in them. Now, I wonder if they do, if and when the aforementioned players return.

        I’m certainly not saying that the Nats have become a championship contender in less than half a season. But they’re young and improving and some of the injured players havew returned, or should return soon. Further improvement is needed.

    • schmedley69 - Jun 19, 2012 at 9:11 PM

      Um, we haven’t even hit the All Star Break yet, and you’re already claiming a “changing of the guard.” The Phillies may not with the East this year, but that doesn’t mean that the Nats will. You haven’t won anything yet, and there is no guarantee that you will. And even if the Phils have a down year, it does not mean that they are done for good. They have plenty of resources to re-tool. All that being said, as bad as everything has gone this year, I still expect the Phils to make a run in the second half. If 2 of the big 3 of Halladay/Utley/Howard come back at at least 75%, I think the Phils make a run at the wild card, if not the division. The Nats are a decent team, but they’ve played about as good as they possibly could in the first half, while the Phils have played about as bad as they possibly could. I expect things to even out a little in the second half.

  12. sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:36 PM

    I have been reading about PED users in the press for a while now. Based on what I know, I reject this suspension. Everyone knows REAL PED users have Bagwell forearms and Piazza backne. That is the only evidence that matters. Until I see both on Freddy, he is absolutely innocent. Next case please.

    • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 19, 2012 at 6:39 PM

      How hilarious would it be if he showed up looking like Popeye, 180 lbs with giant forearms and terrible backne?

      • sabathiawouldbegoodattheeighthtoo - Jun 19, 2012 at 9:12 PM

        They’d better make sure it is just spinach in that pipe!

    • flcounselor - Jun 20, 2012 at 3:49 PM

      Don’t they need to have Bonds hat size, also?

  13. prrbrr - Jun 19, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    Et tu Freddy??? Damn arse

  14. seanmk - Jun 20, 2012 at 9:41 AM

    conspiracy theory i’d throw out there is this happened earlier and he appealed, and since he’s now on the DL with the back issue he dropped the appeal, and will serve the suspension while on the DL (since that counts toward the suspension). that and the link earlier about how he could have “contracted” it sounds like a possiblity.

  15. redscarfunion - Jun 20, 2012 at 10:17 AM

    So sad! Realistically you don’t even have to be in shape to make it in the MLB why use PED

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