Justin Verlander has been one of Major League Baseball's most outspoken players when it comes to positive tests for performance-enhancing drugs.
He's insisted on stiffer penalties and chafes when players deny knowingly taking PEDs in the face of positive tests.
So, not surprisingly, it didn't take long for the former AL Cy Young winner to sound off when he heard Seattle Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano had received an 80-game suspension for violating MLB's Joint Drug Prevention policy.
"Aaaand excuse coming in 3..... 2...... 1......"
Verlander's tweet came just as Cano's prepared statement was hitting news media inboxes, but before it was widely disseminated.
Cano, a good bet to make the Hall of Fame before his positive test was revealed, insisted that what he took (Furosemide) was not a performance-enhancing drug.
“Recently I learned that I tested positive for a substance called Furosemide, which is not a Performance Enhancing Substance,’’ Cano said in a statement issued by the Major League Players Association. "Furosemide is used to treat various medical conditions in the United States and the Dominican Republic. This substance was given to me by a licensed doctor in the Dominican Republic to treat a medical ailment. While I did not realize at the time that I was given a medication that was banned, I obviously now wish that I had been more careful."
Excuse or not, Verlander remains a PED hardliner.
"If there is proven intent to cheat — i.e. you tested positive or it’s found that you were taking an illegal substance, PEDs, and trying to cheat the system, trying to go around it — I think it should be a ban from baseball," Verlander said in a 2016 interview, on the heels of then-Marlins second baseman Dee Gordon's suspension.
“It’s too easy for guys to serve a suspension and come back and still get paid.”