Greenwich native, Mets prospect Mazzilli suspended 50 games

Greenwich native and University of Connecticut second baseman L.J. Mazzilli makes the play in the field during a game for the Huskies. — photo courtesy of the University of Connecticut

Greenwich native and University of Connecticut second baseman L.J. Mazzilli makes the play in the field during a game for the Huskies. — photo courtesy of the University of Connecticut

Major League Baseball on Tuesday announced that Greenwich native and New York Mets prospect LJ Mazzilli has been suspended 50 games for failing a drug test under the minor league drug program.

This was the second time that Mazzilli has tested positive.

“I would like to sincerely apologize for my actions to Mr. Fred and Jeff Wilpon, Mr. Sandy Alderson and the N.Y. Mets organization,” said Mazzilli in a statement released by the New York Mets. “I would also like to apologize to my family, my friends and my fans, who have supported me in my life and my career. Unfortunately, in life, you cannot go back on a bad decision that was made, and in my case, one that I very much regret. After everything my loved ones, supporters, and the NY Mets have given me, especially an opportunity to chase my childhood dream, I couldn’t be more ashamed and sorry.”

Mazzilli also said that he is ready to own up to his mistake and accept the repercussions from MLB.

“I also want to apologize to the Commissioner’s Office and MLB,” Mazzilli said. “I have learned the hard way that nothing in this life is as important as being a good representative of yourself, your legacy, your family, and contributing positively to society. I am ready to move forward positively in my life and in my career.”

Splitting time between the Single-A Savannah Sand Gnats and the Port St. Lucie Mets, and playing one game with the Triple-A Las Vegas 51’s last year, Mazzilli played in 131 games and bat .301. He laced 152 hits, 29 doubles, launched 11 home runs and finished with 79 runs batted in.

In addition, Mazzilli attempted 14 stolen bases and was caught only four times.

“We support the Minor League Drug Prevention and Treatment Program,” the New York Mets said in a released statement. “We were disappointed and sorry to hear of LJ’s struggles. We are pleased that LJ has sought counseling to address his issues.”

The 24-year-old Mazzilli played collegiate baseball at the University of Connecticut and was drafted by the Mets in the 2013 Amateur draft as the 116th overall pick.

In a statement, Lee Mazzilli, father of LJ Mazzilli who played for 10 years with the New York Mets, said that there is nothing politically correct that he could say that can soften the blow and that his son made a mistake.

“Just like any other parent out there we are disappointed and hurt when our children make bad decisions,” Lee Mazzilli said. “However, we are proud of our son for seeking professional help on his own. The only thing now that we can do as a family is love him, support him, and have faith as we’ve always done.”

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