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Brian Walton's news and commentary on the St. Louis Cardinals (TM) and their minor league system

Segundo is “second” in line of Cardinals suspensions

St. Louis Cardinals minor league pitcher Jefferson Segundo has been suspended 50 games for a violation of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, Major League Baseball announced on Friday. The 20-year-old tested positive for metabolites of Stanozolol.

Segundo is a native of the Dominican Republic who was signed during the second quarter of 2009 by the organization and assigned to the Dominican Summer League Cardinals.

In his first professional season, the 6-foot-3, 165-pound right-hander appeared in 12 games including one start, posting a 8.04 ERA. Primarily deployed as a late-innings reliever, Segundo struck out 17 in 15 2/3 innings, but walked an amazing 25 opposing batters.

Segundo, which literally means “second” in Spanish, is in fact the second Cardinals farmhand to have failed a test for banned substances since the conclusion of the 2009 regular season.

60 days ago, it was announced that Batavia infielder Alan Ahmady is suspended for the first 50 games of the 2010 season due to a positive test for an amphetamine. The 2009 draftee had also been suspended twice for unannounced violations at Fresno State this past spring.

In 2009 alone, Segundo is the fifth Cardinal minor leaguer to have been busted, following Deryk Hooker, Kenny Maiques, Dail Villanueva and Ahmady and 11th in the last two years. Maiques was our 15th-ranked Cardinals prospect at Scout.com/The Cardinal Nation just two years ago coming off a record-setting save season with Quad Cities only to be released this July.

Including the Cardinals five, 79 minor leaguers across the 30 MLB systems have been suspended under the program during 2009. An organization’s “fair share” of the total would be between two and three.

Since 2005, the Cardinals have seen a total of 16 of their Major or Minor Leaguers face suspension for substance violations, ranking among the highest number of suspensions of any MLB organization. Here is a link to details about the first 13.

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