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Zinicola suspended 50 games for drug of abuse

Jan 5, 2012, 8:36 PM EST

Nationals right-hander Zechry Zinicola has been suspended 50 games following a second violation of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, MLB announced this afternoon.

Zinicola's suspension is not for performance enhancing drugs but rather for a drug of abuse.

The 26-year-old right-hander is coming off a strong season in which he posted a combined 2.01 ERA, five saves and a 44-to-13 strikeout-to-walk ratio at Class AA Harrisburg and Class AAA Syracuse.

A sixth-round pick in the 2006 draft out of Arizona State, Zinicola was initially touted as a fast-track prospect who could reach the majors inRead more »

  1. Sec 204 Row H Seat 7 - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:41 PM

    What a shame. No doubt the drug use contribute to his less than stellar performance.

  2. Mark'd - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Sad in so many respects. Hope he gets the help he needs.

  3. Tim the Enhancer - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Dumb doper. Should have stuck with martinis.

  4. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:43 PM

    Bob Carpenter will return to the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network as the play-by-play voice of the Nationals, according a baseball source.Late last year, it appeared Carpenter would not return to the booth after the Nats didn't pick up his option last August, but both sides managed to come to terms recently. Calls to Carpenter were not returned.It will mark Carpenter's seventh season in the broadcast booth for MASN. He is known for the catch phrase, "See you later," whenever a Nationals player hits a home run.F.P. Santangelo will continue to be Carpenter's broadcast partner. Santangelo is the fifth TV partner for Carpenter, who has worked with Tom Paciorek, Don Sutton, Rob Dibble and Ray Knight.

  5. Tcostant - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    Do they gets these guys into treatment? Last think a drug abuser needs if 50 days of free time.

  6. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    Zig Zag is his paper of choice, no doubt.

  7. Grandstander - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:50 PM

    Hopefully this is a wake up call and he can get the help he needs. Drug addiction is a terrible thing to go through.

  8. lefty1950 - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:51 PM

    I guess he hangs out with Trent Williams and Fred Davis.

  9. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:53 PM

    If he is suspended for the first fifty games and it begins when the season begins – does he go to spring training?

  10. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:57 PM

    He is known for the catch phrase, "See you later," whenever a Nationals player hits a home run.That, or a long fly ball that approaches the fence but doesn't quite make it over. He's also known for having a sharp eye for the double play ball, which doesn't always translate into having a sharp eye for the double play. But there's one thing you can say for sure about ol' Bob. He's always one step ahead of the game.

  11. DC Tom - Jan 5, 2012 at 8:58 PM

    Never in the history of baseball has there been a big-league player with the initials "ZZ". I suspect the pressure of this got to him.

  12. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:04 PM

    Nats reportedly in the mix on Eric Chavez. LH bat who can play 3B or maybe 1B. Is Zim or LaRoche not healthy? Odd potential addition after ReRosa, no?dfh21

  13. bobfromalexandria - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:07 PM

    sad sad sad. Now we know why he was on the fast track. He won't play in the Lerners' organization again.

  14. Pete - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:15 PM

    Yes but ZZ Top is excellent. Also, you know who isn't suspended the first 50 games next year? Prince Fielder.

  15. Sec 3, My Sofa - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:16 PM

    It is a shame, but I don't think we know which was first–whatever he was using, or the "unfulfilled potential" he seemed to be starting to come around on, sorta. When was the first offense? Still, too bad. capcha: "reism" — I guess the software doesn't believe in potential.

  16. FireAndyFeffer - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:25 PM

    Three important things here:1) I feel sad for Zac and his family, maybe a trip for the Mexican Winter League (where drugs are cheap and plentiful) was not the best assignment for the Nats to send him on during the offseason.2) Horrible news that BCrap is back in the booth, watching paint dry is more exciting than listening to him and FP and don't get me started on the two radio chuckleheads, the Potomac radio guy is better than they are!3) Great news on interest in Chavez he is a good bat off the bench which is what Davey is looking for to round out the bench.

  17. natsfan1a - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:26 PM

    That's a shame. As others noted, hope the guy gets some help to deal with it (assuming that he wants to deal with it).

  18. natsfan1a - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    Also, I'm fine with Bob and FP (let the flaming commence).

  19. Feel Wood - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:28 PM

    Nats reportedly in the mix on Eric Chavez. LH bat who can play 3B or maybe 1B. Is Zim or LaRoche not healthy? Odd potential addition after ReRosa, no?Remember when Rizzo told Boswell he was busy working on the bench, and then BINGO! he traded for Gio? Now, when all the talk is Fielder to the Nats, Rizzo is again spotted working on the bench.Working on the bench. It's Rizzo's "tell."

  20. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:29 PM

    Who needs the PF Flyer when you have a FP Flyer in hand?

  21. Jim Webster - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:42 PM

    Glad to see Carpenter back. I still have a few pages to fill in my second Carpenter score book.

  22. SonnyG10 - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:49 PM

    I'm sad and unhappy with Zech. I hope he gets the help he needs and gets straightened out.On the Bob Carpenter note, I would be happy to see him back along with FP. In fact, I was hoping for such. They can flame me also, 1a!

  23. John Denver - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:55 PM

    I'd love to pass the pipe with Zeckry, Trent and Fred just like I did with my ole' lady and the Danoffs back in the day.Peace,John Denver

  24. Young Pitchers - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    OT-didn't see this posted yet but Darvish wants a 6/90 contract according to Japanese mediaFWIW.

  25. Section 222 - Jan 5, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    So how come this ZZ news gets a post here, but the piece on Marlon Byrd is only on the CSN site? Seems like that one is much more discussion worthy from the peanut gallery.So I'll discuss it anyway. :-) I'd actually love to see Marlon Byrd back in a Nats uniform. I remember admiring his hustle when he played in RFK. He might not be the best option given his salary, but I'd be delighted if he were our stopgap, and potentially a 4th outfielder once Harper comes up. Also, I think it's by no means a foregone conclusion that Harper will be ready to play full time this year. So Byrd would be a nice option if we end up going most of the year with Werth in RF and Morse in LF. Surely he's an upgrade from Bernadina.Since we're stuck with FP, I don't care much whether it's Carp or someone else doing the play by play. I'll be syncing the radio with the MASN feed as often as I can anyway. Charlie and Dave are miles ahead. At least Carp has toned down the See. You. Later. call and seemed to only do it on no doubter HRs this year. If anyone can find links to false positives, please do post. They are pretty hilarious.

  26. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 10:19 PM

    Its ok to drink 12 beers, but don't toke on that doobie, we'll suspend you. Its a sham

  27. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 10:46 PM

    Ok, the guy was not suspended for "drug abuse" he failed a test for the presence of some recreational drug. It's presumptive, even though this is his second offense, to call it drug abuse. Maybe it is, but maybe it is something less loaded than that.

  28. Mark Zuckerman - Jan 5, 2012 at 10:58 PM

    Anon: This is the exact wording from MLB's press release:"The Office of the Commissioner of Baseball announced today that Washington Nationals Minor League right-handed pitcher Zechry Zinicola has received a 50-game suspension after a second violation of the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program for a drug of abuse."

  29. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 11:14 PM

    A violation of the MLDPTP "for a drug of abuse" is not the same as being suspended "for drug abuse."

  30. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 11:16 PM

    Zuck has it right in the body, the headline, which can be less accurate in my mind, no?dfh21

  31. Anonymous - Jan 5, 2012 at 11:53 PM

    Anon @5:19: That's because beer is not illegal, and Augie Busch isn't shoting people in mexico and the US to control his beer turf.

  32. baseballswami - Jan 5, 2012 at 11:59 PM

    It's his second violation? Somebody who is presumably trying to make it in the majors, knows he will be tested, and gets a second violation? This doesn't sound very recreational – this sounds like a problem. I hope he will be offered some help and he will take it.

  33. skidge - Jan 6, 2012 at 12:11 AM

    Not sure if this has been posted here yet: Goes to what baseballswami said.

  34. natsfan1a - Jan 6, 2012 at 12:16 AM

    To sec222's point, I always liked Marlon Byrd, too.

  35. Mark'd - Jan 6, 2012 at 12:27 AM

    Let's new post so we can change subjects

  36. Feel Wood - Jan 6, 2012 at 12:35 AM

    That headline on Zuckerman's Byrd article is like when there's a 0.000001% chance of snow and the TV station fills prime time with commercials saying "Could there be snow on the horizon? Tune in at 11." If there was a way I could revoke my page view of that article, I'd do it.

  37. Wally - Jan 6, 2012 at 12:49 AM

    The Rangers traded Chad Tracy to the Rockies.Except, I thought that we signed the guy a few weeks ago. Who did we sign?

  38. Anonymous - Jan 6, 2012 at 12:53 AM

    What ever happened to the days when an MLB pitcher threw a no-hitter on LSD? I understand why basball needs to rigorously control performance enhancing substances, but I do not understand why players should give up their normal right to privacy to play a game. One more intrusion of self-righteous nannies into the personal lives of others. Having said this, I note that there was stupidity on the part of the player because it was not his first offense and he took a chance anyway.

  39. N. Cognito - Jan 6, 2012 at 1:05 AM

    With the initials ZZ, could his nickname be Zig Zag?

  40. Buzz Killjoy - Jan 6, 2012 at 1:08 AM

    A "Drug Of Abuse" could certainly be anything from sugar to heroin… the first that springs to my mind though; is alcohol-C2H5(OH)-, which is certainly the most prevalent and costly to society.

  41. Just wonderin' - Jan 6, 2012 at 1:38 AM

    Why is the following even being posted? editor allowed her to use three exclamation points in a four paragraph article?

  42. NatinBeantown - Jan 6, 2012 at 2:06 AM

    This string of comments is the absolute nadir of the offseason. 45 days never felt so far away.

  43. NatinBeantown - Jan 6, 2012 at 2:08 AM

    …and another thing: FireAndyFeffer, you bite your tongue. Charlie and Dave are legitimately one of the best pair of radio announcers in sports. I listened to a ton of MLB radio this year, often to the other team's radio feed, and Nats fans are blessed to have them.

  44. Anonymous - Jan 6, 2012 at 2:16 AM

    ##< Yawn >##

  45. slidell - Jan 6, 2012 at 2:24 AM

    Attaboy Beantown. (9:08) My experience too.

  46. Unkyd - Jan 6, 2012 at 3:59 AM

    LuvLuvLuv me some Charlie and Dave!!! And I get the smallest handful of TB games, so I was scared that Dave was going to TV… For Petes sake!! You don't even need ANY commentary on TV!!

  47. Unkyd - Jan 6, 2012 at 4:01 AM

    TV….. TV games…..

  48. Sec 3, My Sofa - Jan 6, 2012 at 4:29 AM

    Its ok to drink 12 beers, but don't toke on that doobie, we'll suspend you.OK, looks like that changes my plans for upgrading those free beers from all those bets I'm holding. capcha: "singr"Well, after 12 beers, sure. Who isn't?

  49. natsfan1a - Jan 6, 2012 at 11:34 AM

    You must not have been reading comments that often since the season ended, Beantown. We can sink way lower than this. ;-)NatinBeantown said… This string of comments is the absolute nadir of the offseason. 45 days never felt so far away. January 5, 2012 9:06 PM

  50. Buzz Killjoy - Jan 6, 2012 at 1:38 PM

    "Zinicola told that the positive test result may have come from his use of synthetic marijuana."I got done playing winter ball and I decided to have a little fun," he said. "I tried out this synthetic marijuana. I tried it a few times … and I got drug tested. It's pretty much what it is. I take responsibility for it. There is no excuse." ""synthetic marijuana" the "Bathtub Gin" of a new generation under a new prohibition regime.Chances are it has roughly the same affect as the real thing, hours of effective intoxication yet 30 days of persistence in the body for "testing" purposes.

  51. NatsNut - Jan 6, 2012 at 2:15 PM

    It's kinda sad how relieved I was that it wasn't for PEDs.





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