My heart skipped a beat, my stomach turned; I couldn’t do anything but put my hands in my head when I heard Dodgers left fielder Manny Ramirez violated major league baseball’s drug policy.

It’s usually light-hearted fun and games when it involves Ramirez. Unfortunately the news this morning is anything but. Ramirez can now be added to the list of notable sluggers to violate baseball’s new drug policy, according to an ESPN.com article.

Ramirez will sit out 50 games for testing positive for a female fertility drug, human chorionic gonadotropin or hCG and using artificial testosterone. These are not steroids, but a banned substance Ramirez received from a doctor.

“Unfortunately, the medication was banned under our drug policy. Under the policy that mistake is now my responsibility,” Ramirez told ESPN. “I have been advised not to say anything more for now. I do want to say one other thing; I’ve taken and passed about 15 drug tests over the past five seasons.”

Once again former ball player and steroid user Jose Canseco is in the headlines, who said he took the drug to restore his testosterone level. He said prior to the testing that he was almost surely using banned drugs and was not surprised at all by the results. God I’m sick of this punk. Canseco is a perfect example of a cheater who financially capitalized on his wrongdoings. He proclaims himself as the ‘insider’ of baseball who isn’t afraid to bear it all. But I digress.

As a Dodgers fan, I empathize for the game, which will be deprived of one of the greatest hitters of all time, and for Ramirez, because it feels like I have to believe him. He said he sought treatment for a personal illness and was prescribed the banned substance in a prescription from his doctor. He could be trying to cover himself, but he said he has taken 15 or so drug tests previously and hasn’t tested positive before. All anyone has really heard is Ramirez’ vague statement, thus I cannot truly draw an opinion. My heart wants to believe him but something sounds like it is missing.

But what I know is, In today’s baseball world of conspiracy and here-say regarding banned substances, players cannot be careful enough regarding what the put in their body. Ramirez, as many others have, learned the hard way.

Dodgers will probably bring up some up-and-coming young prospect to fill the void, but fans pay to see “Mannywood.” But hey, Dodgers have a huge lead in the NL West and could showcase another young talent from its productive farm system. Not to mention the team will save $8 million in salary and hopefully reap the benefit of a healthy and well rested Ramirez come playoffs.

Manny, I hope you are telling the truth, but honestly, I don’ t know what to think anymore.

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