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Miami Marlins Pitching Staff: Paul Campbell Doubts Positive Test

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Miami’s 25-year-old pitcher Paul Campbell says he never knowingly ingested anabolic steroid.

Marlins general manager Kim Ng said the organization was disappointed by the news of Campbell’s suspension. The Miami Marlins pitching staff will take a hit losing Campbell’s potential in the bullpen. The rookie right-hander has suspended 80 games after testing positive for an anabolic steroid. The 25-year-old made his major league debut this season and is 0-2 with an 8.74 ERA in five games and 11 1/3 innings. He made one start for Miami.

Miami Marlins Pitching Staff; Paul Campbell Doubts Negative Test

On April 3, 2021, Campbell made his MLB debut in relief against the Tampa Bay Rays. He started his first MLB game on May 1. The Marlins organization is chock full of pitching talent. Campbell, a 21st-round pick out of Clemson in 2017, posted an 8.74 ERA in five appearances with Miami this year. He started and lost against the Nationals on Saturday, giving up four earned runs in 3 ⅔ innings. 

Campbell is making the major league minimum of $570,500 this season and will lose about half that amount. Campbell, a Rule 5 acquisition in December, said he never knowingly ingested the substance or had even heard of it. That hurts the most.

“Due to the fact that I do not know the origin of how this substance has entered into my system, I currently have no viable defense,” Campbell said in a statement. “I have unfortunately become one of the many athletes, across multiple sports, who are presenting themselves to the world and asking for members of the anti-doping world to help us find answers as to why this metabolite is continuing to show up in athletes’ bodies, and ultimately costing them significant detours in their careers.”

Miami Marlins Pitching Staff

The Marlins had ample room to protect eligible players and were able to escape the proceedings unscathed, while also selecting a player. Ng selected Rays’ right-hander Paul Campbell because of his astronomical spin rates.

Paul Campbell is valued for spin rate. He throws an average fastball and a pedestrian offspeed pitch. Spin rate does not immediately translate to success, but it’s certainly a great asset in any pitcher’s toolbox.

Conflicting Test Results

DHCMT-related suspensions have become a significant point of contention for major- and minor-league players, with some drug experts questioning the efficacy of the tests for a PED. Other current players who have tested positive for DHCMT include Red Sox infielder Michael Chavis and Giants pitcher Logan Webb. CDMT was the key steroid administered to approximately 10,000 athletes from East Germany (GDR) as secret official policy, often without their knowing the nature of the “vitamins” they were forced to take. 

In August 2017, UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Jon Jones tested positive for turinabol in a drug test administered by USADA following his victory over Daniel Cormier at UFC 214 the month prior.

In August 2020, Washington Nationals catcher Tres Barrera sued MLB, the commissioner’s office, the director of an anti-doping lab, and two league-contracted labs in Utah and Montreal after he tested positive for DHCMT and was suspended. After Barrera’s positive test, Jeff Novitzky, the former federal agent credited with breaking open the BALCO doping scandal and now a consultant for UFC, tweeted that there was “something screwy” with the DHCMT test results. Take that for whatever it’s worth.

Miami Marlins Pitching Staff; Paul Campbell Doubts Negative Test

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