Almonte suspended 80 games for failed drug test

Posted at 5:48 PM, Feb 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-26 17:48:58-05

Indians outfielder Abraham Almonte has been suspended 80 games by Major League Baseball after testing positive for a performance-enhancing substance.

MLB said Friday that Almonte tested positive for Boldenone, an anabolic steroid generally used by veterinarians on horses.

The 26-year-old outfielder will not be allowed to play in regular season games until July, but can play in spring training.

Almonte was likely to compete for a starting job in the outfield while Michael Brantley works his way back from a shoulder injury.

Acquired by the Indians on July 31, 2015 in a deal for left-handed reliever Marc Rzepczynski, Almonte played 51 games for Cleveland last season, hitting .264 with five home runs and 20 RBIs.

Battling back spasms since arriving to the team's complex in Arizona last week, Almonte returned to baseball activities with the Indians on Friday several hours before the suspension was announced.

MLB says 18 minor and major league players have been found in violation of the league's drug policy this year, including three major league players.