Mariners shortstop/outfielder Michael Morse has been suspended for 10 days for violation of Major Leauge Baseball's drug program.
Morse, in a statement released today, admitted using steroids in 2003 and said this positive test -- his third -- was a result of that use.
Morse, 23, said in the statement he took steroids in November 2003 to help a torn thigh muscle heal. He was suspended in May 2004, while he was a minor leaguer in the Chicago White Sox organization. After coming to the Mariners as part of the Freddy Garcia trade last June, he was again suspended in July 2004. At the time, he played for the Mariners Class AA affiliate in San Antonio.
Morse said the positive tests as a minor-leaguer were both a result of the steroids he used in November 2003.
Morse learned earlier this season he had again tested positive, again, he says, because of the 2003 use. He appealed the suspension, and Morse said the arbitration panel, while suspending him, said it was "undisputed" that the steroids had "no performance-enhancing effect."
"I find it unfair that I am being punished three different times for making the mistake of taking steroids once in 2003," Morse said in the statement.
Morse is the third Mariners major-league player to be suspended this year, after outfielder Jamal Strong and pitcher Ryan Franklin.