Nationals

Mets' Robinson Canó suspended entire 2021 MLB season for PED use

Nationals

New York Mets second baseman Robinson Canó will be suspended for the entirety of the 2021 MLB season without pay after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug, the team announced on Wednesday.

Canó will forfeit $24 million for the upcoming season. The 162-game suspension serves as the automatic punishment for a player that violates the league's substance abuse policy, as Canó was suspended for 80 games back in 2018 when he tested positive for a PED as a member of the Seattle Mariners.

Team president Sandy Alderson released a statement following the news.

This is not the first time the Mets have dealt with the fallout of performance-enhancing drugs. Former reliever Jenrry Mejia was banned indefinitely from Major League Baseball in 2016 after testing positive for a PED for the third time. Mejia was eventually reinstated in 2018. 

Canó came to the Mets prior to the 2019 season along with reliever Edwin Diaz in a trade that sent top prospect Jared Kelenic to the Mariners. The veteran second baseman struggled in his first season with New York's NL squad but bounced back in the shortened 2020 season. The 8-time All-Star and 2009 World Series champion with the New York Yankees hit .316 with a .352 on-base percentage and 10 home runs in 49 games last season.

Now, the Mets will be without that production for a 2021 campaign that had begun to pick up some steam in recent weeks. The arrival of new owner Steve Cohen has ushered in a new era for the franchise as it looks to once again become a serious contender in the NL East.

 

With Canó's $24 million off the books for next season, New York can now use that money elsewhere. That could come in handy as they begin to potentially pursue free agents, or if they hope to trade for Francisco Lindor and sign him long-term.