The odyssey of Billy Rowell took another strange turn Monday when Major League Baseball announced that the Orioles' first-round pick in 2006 has been suspended for 50 games for his second violation of the minor league’s drug testing and prevention program.
Rowell, 23, tested positive for a “drug of abuse,” MLB stated in a news release Monday. The specific drug is not revealed. He had been in Sarasota attempting to become a pitcher after six seasons as an infielder/outfielder in which he batted a collective .261 and never played above Double-A Bowie.
Rowell becomes the third player in the Orioles’ organization to be suspended this year for a drug of abuse. The other two were catchers Brian Ward, a former undrafted free agent, and Michael Ohlman, an 11th rounder in 2009.