Personally, I wasn’t surprised to hear that both Melky Cabrera and then Bartolo Colon tested positive for performance enhancing drugs, but it does come as a shock to hear Yankees GM Brian Cashman come out and say the same thing.
“Unfortunately, not surprised,” Brian Cashman said to Michael Kay on his ESPNRadio show.
“You see some spike in performance,” Cashman said. “You hope it’s not the case, but you scratch your head and you wonder at the same time. But then you sit there and get a comfort level: Tests are taking place, so if people are passing their tests …
“In Bartolo’s case, as well as he has done last year as well through this year, at his age, after coming back from that surgery, makes you scratch your head.”
“When we traded (Melky) to Atlanta we had him as a low-end, everyday regular or an excellent fourth outfielder,” Cashman said. “And that’s how we show where we thought his ceiling was. As you know, he was starting for us in the World Series, but we had him as a low-end, everyday guy, not a National League MVP candidate. So I wasn’t surprised.”
The reason I say it’s so surprising is not based on what Cashman said about Cabrera so much, but about Colon. He was the one who signed Colon last season at age 38. There wasn’t a huge reason to think the guy had suddenly turned his career around and it sounds as if Cashman was skeptical the entire time. If that’s the case though, why sign the guy? By Cashman coming out and saying this it almost sounds like he’s saying he’s not against signing guys he might be suspicious toward.
I’m going to give the guy the benefit of the doubt though. The Yankees only signed Colon based off his performance last winter pitching in the Dominican. Bench coach Tony Pena was the manager of his team and gave Cash a strong scouting report on the guy. Cashman listened to him, but clearly didn’t have a ton of faith in Colon as he signed him to a minor league deal and then forced him to pitch his way out of the bullpen. When the season was over he cut his losses thinking that he was finally done. I think the more eye opening part came this year when he bounced back yet again. Once is fine, but as Cashman said, twice at the age 39 and coming off of shoulder surgery – that should raise some red flags.
Anyway, this is just more of Cashman not afraid to speak his mind even in front of the media. I don’t think anybody was shocked by either testing positive and I’m glad Cashman was not afraid to speak his mind about it.