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04/11/2008 1:13 PM ET
Major League Baseball and Players Association modify Joint Drug Agreement
Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association have agreed on modifications to the Joint Drug Agreement that respond to the recommendations made by Senator George Mitchell in his December 2007 report. The modifications will become effective after ratification by the 30 Clubs and the players, and will be in place for the remaining term of the Joint Drug Agreement, through December 2011.
The major changes are as follows:
1. The Health Policy Advisory Committee (comprised of management and union officials) has
been disbanded and HPAC's responsibilities for the administration of the Program on
performance-enhancing substances have been delegated to the Independent Program
Administrator (IPA), Dr. Bryan Smith. Dr. Smith has been appointed for an initial term of
three years and his appointment can be renewed for successive four-year terms. During his
tenure, Dr. Smith can be removed only if an independent arbitrator confirms that he has acted
in a manner inconsistent with the Program or has engaged in other misconduct that affects his
ability to function as the IPA.
2. The IPA will issue an annual report summarizing the number of tests administered, the
number of positive tests resulting in discipline, the substances involved in the positives, the
number of Therapeutic Use Exemptions granted by category of ailment and the number of
non-analytical positives. The new agreement also requires that records of negative test
results be maintained for two years and requires the IPA annually to audit test results and to
review the performance of the collection company and the laboratory.
3. The program adds 600 tests per year (making the total number of tests 3600), an average of
three per player per year. The Independent Program Administrator is authorized to conduct
up to 375 off-season tests over his three-year initial term, which will, on average, more than
double the amount of off-season testing.
4. The new agreement institutionalizes an annual review process during which the bargaining
parties will meet with the IPA, the collection company and the laboratory to review the
operation of the Program and consider appropriate changes to the Program. As
demonstration of the parties' commitment to improving the Program, the new agreement
expands the list of banned substances to include insulin-like growth factor (IGF-1),
gonadotropins, aromatase inhibitors, selective estrogen receptor modulators and antiestrogens,
5. The new agreement requires the Independent Program Administrator to develop, in
consultation with the Commissioner's Office and the Players Association, an annual,
mandatory educational program. Input will be received from the Strength and Conditioning
Committee to ensure that the educational efforts emphasize legitimate training methods for
6. Major League players, including players named in the Mitchell report, will join MLB in
participating in efforts designed to educate youth and their parents regarding the dangers of
performance-enhancing substances and regarding appropriate and safe training methods.
7. The Players Association, on behalf of its members, will also contribute $200,000 to an antidrug charitable, educational or research organization.
8. In consideration of items 6 and 7, the Commissioner has determined that he will not exercise
his authority under the Joint Drug Agreement against Players and former Players named in the
9. In future investigations, allegations of player misconduct will not be disclosed publicly by the Commissioner's Office unless discipline is imposed. A description of the evidence and
allegations against a player being investigated will be provided to him before any investigatory
10. Starting in 2009, Major League Baseball will impose uniform certification requirements on fulltime strength and conditioning coaches employed by each Club. Starting in 2010, the
Commissioner will issue guidelines designed to ensure that qualified strength and conditioning
coaches are available to players at all levels of each organization.
Major League Baseball also announced that its testing program will be expanded to cover the top 200 prospects in the Amateur Draft. Clubs will be notified of players who test positive, but the players will remain draft eligible. Players who refuse to test will not be eligible for selection.