Major League Baseball announced yesterday that Nationals minor league catcher Hector Taveras has been issued a 25-game suspension. An MLB press release states only that he violated the minor league drug program.
Signed out of the Dominican Republic last March, Taveras batted .300/.361/.369 in 130 at-bats during the 2010 season, which the 21-year-old spent mostly in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League.
Washington also will begin the year without access to catcher Adrian Nieto, a 2008 fifth-rounder who batted just .195/.291/.253 in 174 at-bats for low Class A Hagerstown last season. His suspension will run for 50 games, MLB announced last Thursday. Nieto tested positive for Oxandrolone and metabolite, a performance-enhancing substance.
In recent Nationals suspension news . . .
• Last July, outfielder J.R. Higley and third baseman Steven Souza received 50-game suspensions
• In May, they lost second baseman Seth Bynum for 50 games
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