Anaheim Angels reliever Derrick Turnbow, the first major leaguer to test positive for a banned steroid, faces a two-year ban from international competition but will not face any sanctions from Major League Baseball. (Note: This was in 2003, before MLB had implemented its new drug testing policy)
Turnbow told his agent, Jeff Borris, that the positive drug test was the result of an over-the-counter dietary supplement. The Major League Baseball Players Association said Tuesday that Turnbow did not use anything players with big league contracts currently are prohibited from using.
Gene Orza, associate general counsel of the Major League Baseball Players Association, said Turnbow had tested positive for androstenedione -- the over-the-counter supplement popularized by Mark McGwire during his chase of the home run record in 1998. Andro is now banned in the minor leagues, but is not regulated in the major leagues.
"Derrick Turnbow did not test positive for a steroid. He tested positive for what the IOC (International Olympic Committee) and others regard as a steroid, but the U.S. government does not," Orza said.
"Baseball players are not currently prohibited from buying and using androstenedione," Orza said in an e-mail to The Associated Press. "The IOC and its affiliates can and do ban whatever they feel like banning, because the athletes they exploit have no rights."