Big news just broke courtesy of ESPN's Jerry Crasnick. First base prospect Jonathan Singleton has been suspended 50 games by Major League Baseball for violating its drug testing policy for drugs of abuse. Singleton released a statement through his agents, Matt Sosnick and Aaron Karon.
"I was informed today that I have tested positive for marijuana,'' Singleton said in the statement. "As a result, I am being suspended for the first 50 games of the 2013 season. I accept the penalty and take full responsibility for my actions. I apologize to my parents, the Houston Astros and (general manager) Jeff Luhnow.
"The Astros have been nothing but supportive of me and good to me in my short time with the organization. My hope is to use this as a learning experience and spend the rest of my career proving to myself and the baseball community that this was a lapse in judgment, and is not in any way indicative of my character or my dedication to baseball or to my team.''
This puts to bed my plan to install Singleton as the starting first baseman out of spring training and means that Brett Wallace will have at least 50 games before he has to relinquish the job. Realistically, this means that Singleton will probably spent most of the season in the minors at Oklahoma City before possibly making an appearance in the majors around August or September.
I wonder how the organization will handle him now. They haven't taken a hard line with guys who have incidents, but didn't retain Jordan Schafer after his kerfuffle last year. On a day when the moral police in the BBWAA kept everyone out of the Hall of Fame, how will Houston deal with Singleton?