In its efforts to combat opioid use among players, Major League Baseball is changing its approach to marijuana. The league has removed weed from its list of banned substances and will not test minor league players. (Major league players currently don’t get tested.)
In prior policy, minor league players faced 25-game suspension for a first offense with pot, 50 games for a second positive test for marijuana, 100 games for a third offense, and a lifetime ban for a fourth.
The new policy goes in effect partially in response to the death in July of Los Angeles Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs after an opioid overdose. Of course questions abound: will the new policy make a difference? Is it too little too late?
Is MLB really just following the trends in society toward marijuana decriminalization and legalization? Which pro sports will follow – and will we see any changes by the NCAA?
It’ll be interesting to see the fallout from this decision and change.