(WTNH)–Former UConn star and New York Mets second base prospect L.J. Mazzilli has been suspended for 50 games following a second positive test for “a drug of abuse”, Major League Baseball announced on Tuesday.
Mazzilli, who was selected by the Mets in the fourth round of the 2013 MLB Draft, is the son of former Mets and Yankees outfielder Lee Mazzilli, who played in the major leagues from 1976-89. He also managed the Baltimore Orioles in 2004 and ’05, and spent four seasons as a coach with the Yankees.
The 24-year-old L.J. hit a combined .301 with 11 home runs and 79 RBI in 505 at-bats with the Savannah Sand Gnats and St. Lucie Mets last season.
Mazzilli will serve the penalty at the start of next season.
“Unfortunately in life, you cannot go back on a bad decision that was made, and in my case, one that I very much regret,” L.J. said in a statement released by the Mets on Tuesday. “After everything my loved ones, supporters and the N.Y. Mets have given me, especially an opportunity to chase my childhood dream, I couldn’t be more ashamed and sorry. I am fully ready to own up to my mistake and accept the repercussions from MLB.”
“I have learned the hard way that nothing in this life is as important as being a good representative of yourself, your legacy, your family, and contributing positively to society. I am ready to move forward positively in my life and in my career.”
Lee Mazzilli also weighed in via a statement issued by the Mets:
“There is nothing politically correct that I could say that can soften the blow. My son made a mistake,” he said. “Just like any other parent out there, we are disappointed and hurt when our children make bad decisions. However, we are proud of our son for seeking professional help on his own.”Just like any other parent out there, we are disappointed and hurt when our children make bad decisions. However, we are proud of our son for seeking professional help on his own.”
Information from the AP was used in this report.