Carlos Ruiz has been waiting longer than most for his first at-bat of the 2013 Major League Baseball season. The reason the Philadelphia Phillies catcher has been waiting so long is because he had to sit out the first 25 games of the seasons thanks to a positive test for banned substances.
The former All-Star fell victim to the strengthened punishment of offenders who are using any drugs that are considered even remotely useful for enhancing performance on the baseball field. The catcher returned to the field for the first time this season on Sunday.
In that return, the backstop went just 1-4 with a single but the team beat the New York Mets 5-1. There’s nothing to say that his return is the reason his team won their contest but it does mean that a catcher who posted career numbers is finally back and can put the suspension behind him.
Carlos Ruiz is more than willing to simply put the issue behind him. ”I was real happy on the way,” he said. ”It was a nice feeling that everything was over.” The Phillies were just 11-14 in the absence of the man who most teammates affectionately refer to as “Chooch.”
The suspension was announced on November 27, after a second test revealed that he had Adderall in his system. A first positive test merely means that the player must test again. A second test results in a suspension.
After testing positive, Chooch apologized to his teammates and fans and issued another apology during spring training this year. Despite appearing sincerely regretful the Philadelphia Phillie didn’t want to talk about the suspension saying only “”I don’t know, man. I don’t have anything to say about that.”
In preparation for his first big league game since Spring Training the fan favorite played in four minor league rehab games.
What kind of season do you think Carlos Ruiz will have?