Though not official yet, the reported proposed drug policy change-up could remove marijuana from the list of drugs to be tested for among minor league players

By Benjamin VanHoose
December 10, 2019 02:13 PM
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A reported change to professional baseball’s drug policies could take pot off the strikeout list.

On Monday, Ken Rosenthal, a sports writer at The Athletic, tweeted that sources told him that the MLB and the Players Association had reached a new deal on whether minor league players should be tested for marijuana, a substance major league players already aren’t tested for.

“As part of a new agreement on opioids being negotiated between Major League Baseball and the players’ union, MLB will remove marijuana from the list of banned substances for minor leaguers, sources tell The Athletic,” Rosenthal wrote in the tweet.

Representatives from the MLB and the MLB Players Association did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

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Currently, if a minor league player is tested positive for a “drug of abuse” — a designation marijuana holds at the moment — they are suspended for 25 games on their first offense, according to CBS Sports.

It’s then 50 games for a second positive result, 100 for a third and a lifetime ban for a fourth.

Per MLB guidelines, the substances listed as “drugs of abuse” include natural cannabinoids like THC, hashish and marijuana, as well as cocaine, LSD, MDMA, bath salts and opiates like heroin and morphine.

While marijuana is legal for recreational use in 11 states, it is still classified as a Schedule I drug on the federal level by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.

Though it’s not official yet, the proposed lift on a marijuana ban is anticipated to be finalized by the end of the year, CBS Sports reports.