25 Sep 2020 5:22 PM +00:00

Toronto Blue Jays: Osuna suspension raises more questions

(Photo Credit: Keith Allison)

MLB has finally reached a verdict on Roberto Osuna and though the judge hasn't even banged the gavel yet, Commissioner Rob Manfred announced that the league has suspended the 23-year-old reliever for 75 games retroactive to May 8, when Osuna was first placed on administrative leave. This means that Osuna will be eligible to return on August 4, but he's not out of the woods yet as he could still be subject to some time in prison. Osuna's next court date is scheduled for July 9, and he intends to plead not guilty to the charges. That being said, MLB has reached their verdict and have imposed a suspension deemed appropriate for Osuna's case as they continue to handle the situation well.

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MLB's actions

The MLB has set a new precedent in dealing with domestic violence cases such as this one. The Joint Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Child Abuse Policy that was negotiated with the MLBPA states that the Commissioner has the power to impose a disciplinary action he sees fit whether or not the case goes to trial and regardless of if the player is found guilty. Throughout the past, we've seen the league hand out hefty suspensions for cases such as this, the most recent examples being Jose Reyes, Aroldis Chapman, and Jeurys Familia. The lengths of these suspensions came nowhere close to the suspension Osuna is about to serve with Jose Reyes' suspension being the closest at 51 games. This implies that the league is cracking down harder on these cases by increasing the severity of these disciplinary actions, and I expect leagues like the NFL and NBA to follow suit with their players soon.

The team's actions

Now, the league has done its job and disciplined Osuna, but another looming thought in this whole situation is as follows: what should the Toronto Blue Jays do once Osuna's suspension concludes? As stated earlier, the league is handing out lengthier suspensions regarding domestic violence cases, so should teams do the same? We saw the Colorado Rockies move on from Jose Reyes shortly after his suspension was served and the Blue Jays management is left with a tough decision on its hands. Moving on from Osuna would make a huge statement as to how teams will handle such cases with their players. However, before he was charged, Osuna was the Blue Jays' best reliever and one of the league's premier talents, so it's safe to say the Blue Jays would miss him in their bullpen. That being said, if the Blue Jays are looking to make a stand against domestic violence and show they have zero tolerance for such, it wouldn't be surprising if they parted ways with the young pitcher.

Final thoughts 

Just like the Blue Jays organization, I fully agree and stand with the league's decision to suspend Osuna. As stated before, the league has handled the situation very well, and they've shown that they will no longer put up with players who violate the domestic violence policy. That being said, I firmly believe it's time for teams to take a stand against these acts by moving on from players who violate this policy. Yes, this means I think the Blue Jays should move on from Osuna whether they trade him or straight up waive him, but we've seen NFL teams react this way to players who have had legal issues nowhere near as severe as domestic assault, and I think MLB teams should do the same.

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