Pirates cancel Starling Marte jersey giveaway after PED suspension
The bombshell on Wednesday that All-Star outfielder Starling Marte had been suspended 80 games after testing positive for PEDs sent his Pittsburgh Pirates scrambling to alter their giveaway schedule.
The Pirates announced on Thursday that they have cancelled an upcoming Marte jersey giveaway originally slated for July 2 against San Francisco.
“We decided that it would not be appropriate to provide the Marte alternate jersey on the originally scheduled day while Starling is on the restricted list,” Pittsburgh team spokesman Brian Warecki said in a statement obtained by Sean Gentille of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
Gentille adds that the giveaway was for children under age 14 but that a jersey of a replacement player to be determined at a later date will still be given out.
We saw a similar incident of bad timing like this in the American League last season, but Marte’s absence is certain to hurt the Pirates in way more than just their promotional schedule.