Pittsburgh Pirates All-Star Outfielder Starling Marte has been suspended for 80 games by Major League Baseball for violating its Joint Drug Agreement

Starling Marte has been suspended by Major League Baseball for violating its Joint Drug Agreement.

The Pittsburgh Pirates announced the suspension on twitter.

The team then followed that with a statement from team president Frank Coonelly.

For his part, Starling Marte has issued this statement:

The Joint Drug Agreement

MLB’s Joint Drug Agreement is a wide-ranging agreement that covers various types of drugs, from performance enhancing varieties to those labelled as “drugs of abuse” such as marijuana and cocaine among others. For more info, please refer to the wikipedia entry.

This is obviously a major blow to the Pittsburgh Pirates, and to Starling Marte himself. Marte had been scuggling a bit during the 2017 season’s early going, posting a .241/.288/.370 slashline. Nevertheless, he had powered the team’s early offensive output via two home runs and seven RBI, while learning a new full-time position in centerfield.

The ramifications to this news are massive for the Pirates’ 2017 hopes. Not only will they miss Marte for half of the season, but due to the nature of the suspension, Marte will be ineligible for the postseason, should the Pittsburgh Pirates sneak in.

How the team will backfill Starling Marte’s position is unclear, and Pirates Breakdown will explore those options in a separate post. For now, this post will be updated with more news as it becomes available.


The Pittsburgh Pirates have called up Jose Osuna to take Starling Marte’s spot on the 40-man roster. He will be available starting tonight in St. Louis.



Image Credit – Daniel Decker Photography

Jason Rollison

Jason Rollison has been analyzing baseball and the Pirates in one way or another for 4+ years. Jason's previous stops include rumbunter.com, Pittsburgh Sporting News, Call To The Pen and several print publications. He also covers the State College Spikes for the Centre County Gazette (State College, PA) When it comes to analyzing baseball, he likes to take a middle-of-the-road approach, with one foot on the analytics side of the fence and the other on the old-school side. Having said that, he is a sucker for pitchf/x. Jason has appeared as a phone-in and in-studio guests in numerous outlets, including Trib Live Radio and 93.7 The Fan (CBS Sports Radio)