At a meeting with the press on Saturday MLB Commissioner Bud Selig called for harsher penalties for those players caught using performance-enhancing drugs. Currently, those players confirmed to have taken banned substances receive a 50 game suspension for a first offense, a 100 game suspension for a second offense, and a lifetime ban for a third offense.
According to USA Today, Selig did not advance any specifics, but seemed adamant about implementing stiffer penalties.
"My view," Selig said, "is that it should be done as expeditiously as possible...We've made meaningful adjustments to our testing and now the time has come to make meaningful adjustments to our penalties. I feel very strongly about this.
"This is for the best interest of this sport, and everybody in it."
Selig's comments may have been spurred on by the recent deals signed by outfielder Melky Cabrera with the Toronto Blue Jays, and by starting pitcher Bartolo Colon with the Oakland Athletics. Both players signed contracts for the 2013 season that paid them more than what they were making in 2012.
Cabrera was suspended in August after he tested positive for elevated levels of testosterone. After being released by the San Francisco Giants after their World Series victory last year, Cabrera signed a two year, $16 million deal with the Toronto Blue Jays. During the 2012 season, Cabrera made $6 million in salary.
Colon was suspended for 50 games last August for using synthetic testosterone, which didn't prevent Oakland from re-signing to a one year, $3 million deal — $1 million more than his 2012 salary.