Tigers GM Dave Dombrowski is a bit concerned over talk that Jhonny Peralta may be suspended 50 games in connection to the Biobenesis scandal. Peralta claims to be keeping his head down and playing his game and would not speak about hypotheticals when meeting with the press Tuesday.
Dombrowski, like the rest of us, could read the tea leaves on Peralta. The shortstop's name was linked, vaguely and circumstantially, to the Biogenesis clinic being investigated in Miami relatively early. As the story developed, it became clear Peralta was likely among the 20-plus players MLB sought enough information to suspend. More recently, reports in the media made it sound as if 50-game suspensions would be handed down this week, and that Peralta would likely accept such a suspension. Suspended players will likely be eligible to return in time for the playoffs.
Via Matthew B. Mowery of the Oakland Press, Peralta spoke about the possibility:
"I don't hear nothing yet. Try to play this game. I'm still here so I don't worry about nothing. Try to play this game today," he said, admitting the whole controversy is hard to keep out of mind. "It's hard a little bit but I need to forget about it and try to move on, try to do what I need to do."
If Peralta was concerned, it's not showing on the field. He's had multi-hit games each of his last three, and had a grand slam Sunday against the Phillies. He's batting a .290/.330/.450 slash line for the month of July and .308/.363/460 overall for the year. He also had a hit in his first at bat Wednesday.
Peralta would not say what the next step would be if he in fact is suspended.
Via Tom Gage of the Detroit News, Peralta:
"I don't have any comment on that. I'll try to see what's better for everybody.
"It's going to be disappointing (if he misses a substantial amount of time). I think this is my best year.
"But there is nothing I can do except try to do my best."
Dombrowski claims not to know what will happen, as well, though he says, "When there's enough smoke, you get to be concerned" in Mowery's story. That's why the Tigers had to add Jose Iglesias, who gives the Tigers help not just immediately but also in the future.
"If there is a lengthy suspension in which Jhonny does not play, and I do not know where that stands, we feel that we are now very well protected with somebody that we like a great deal," Dombrowski said. "We didn't feel protected for a lengthy period with the guys we had internally, the more we talked about it."
It seems likely we'll learn more soon. Some reports have put the date of the announcement as soon as Aug. 1, though nothing is official.