HOUSTON Guillermo Mota is one more positive drug test froma lifetime ban. So youd better believe hes going to read labels as carefullyas a vegan with food allergies on Weight Watchers.
I have to be really careful now, said Mota, who wasactivated Tuesday after serving a 100-game ban as a second-time offender of theleagues drug testing procedure.
Giants officials, along with Major League Baseball officialswho heard his appeal, believed Mota was truthful when he said his positive testin May for clenbuterol, a stimulant, came after he took his daughtersprescription cough syrup to treat a case of bronchitis.
That is chief among the reasons why Mota is back, just a fewweeks after the Giants were rocked by Melky Cabreras 50-game suspension for usingtestosterone.
BAGGARLY: Giants see Mota, Melky through different lens
Everybody makes mistakes, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.I do. You do. Unfortunately we all do. I taught my kids and I teach theplayers: when you make a mistake or a bad decision, there are going to beconsequences and he suffered those. A 100-game suspension is a pretty goodpenalty for a man who took some cough syrup for bronchitis. Hes negligent,sure, but this is something he didnt realize.
There was no question of bringing him up. I mean, what doyou do? Condemn the man for that? I wouldnt do it. We dont endorse these guystaking these PEDs. We also want to be known as an organization that cares aboutthe person as a whole, not just the player.
Mota acknowledged that his first suspension, in 2006 withthe Mets, was for steroids. He said he learned his lesson, which is why heexpected the Giants to bring him back after he served his 100-game suspension.
I wasnt suspended for steroids. I wasnt taking asteroid, Mota said. I didnt read the label. Its like .001 milligrams, adrop in the bottle. Its crazy, but I paid the price.
I dont think I did anything to not come back. What I didwas a mistake to not read the label, but its in the past. We move on from it.
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Even though league officials believed Motas story, they couldnot decide the appeal in his favor. (The appeal was held in Los Angeles on June 13 -- the day Matt Cain threw his perfect game, by the way.)
They have a rule and a rule is a rule, he said.
The rules are no different for Cabrera, who lied to club andleague officials when he tested positive for testosterone in July. An associatehired by Cabreras agent even purchased a web site and invented a product in aneffort to defraud the league.
Did Mota think that Cabreras embarrassment would impact theGiants willingness to bring him back?
I dont want to talk about Melky now, Mota said. I wantto talk about the Giants and myself. Im here to help the team. Im not here tohurt the team.
His teammates certainly were glad to have the affableveteran back among them. He walked in the clubhouse to a series of hugs andback slaps.
Thats why Im back here, because of the way I am, Motasaid. I think Im a good person.
One other pregame note: Aubrey Huff is on the trip and will be activated when rosters expand on Saturday, Bochy said. Huff, who is testing his knee by running bases, will be used off the bench. Bochy wouldn't rule out first base, but it appears he will end his Giants tenure as a pinch hitter.
No word yet on whether Jeremy Affeldt and his wife had their third child yet. But Affeldt must return Aug. 31 from paternity leave -- meaning the Giants still face a roster crunch one day before the rosters expand.