MLB bans Padres SS Tucupita Marcano for life


Major League Baseball has banned San Diego Padres shortstop Tucupita Marcano of Tucupita, Venezuela for life for betting on his own team according to Gabe Lacques of USA Today on Tuesday. The betting took place while Marcano was playing for the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2023. Marcano bet $150,000 and reportedly bet on 25 Pirates games after suffering a season ending knee injury on July 24.

There were four more players suspended one season for betting on baseball. They were Arizona Diamondbacks lefthanded pitcher Andrew Saalfrank of Fort Wayne, Indiana, Oakland Athletics relief pitcher Michael Kelly of Boynton Beach, Florida, Philadelphia Phillies second baseman Jose Rodriguez of Esperanza, Dominican Republic, and Padres pitching prospect Jay Groome of Barnegat, New Jersey.

Kelly bet on 10 games in October of 2021. Rodriguez bet on 31 baseball games either at the collegiate level or Major League level in 2021 and 2022. Saalfrank bet on 29 baseball games either at the collegiate level or Major League level in 2021 and 2022. Groome bet 24 times on the Boston Red Sox while playing in their minor league system.

Tucupita Marcano

Marcano played his rookie season with the Padres in 2021 before the last two seasons with the Pirates. He was released by the Pirates and claimed off waivers by the Padres on November 2. Marcano did not play with the Padres because he was recovering from knee surgery. In 2023 with Pittsburgh he batted .233 with three hone runs and 18 runs batted in. During 75 games, 202 at bats and 220 plate appearances, Marcano scored 16 runs, and had 47 hits, 12 doubles, 18 runs batted in, five stolen bases, 10 walks, 72 total bases, three sacrifice bunts, two sacrifice flies, an on base percentage of .276, and a slugging percentage of .356.

Andrew Saalfrank

After not giving up an earned run in 10 1/3 innings in 2023, the 2024 season has been a struggle. He has an earned run average of 36 after giving up four earned runs in a third of an inning during an 8-4 Diamondbacks loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers on April 29.

Michael Kelly

Kelly was with the Philadelphia Phillies in 2022, Cleveland Guardians in 2023, and Oakland Athletics in 2024. During 28 games in 2024, he had a record of three wins and two losses with an earned run average of 2.59. During 31 1/3 innings pitched, Kelly gave up 27 hits, nine earned runs, two home runs and 10 walks, to go along with 22 strikeouts, four holds and a WHIP (walks and hits per innings pitched) of 1.18.

Jose Rodriguez

Rodriguez played in one game for the White Sox at second base in 2023. It came in a 7-6 White Sox win over the eventual Texas Rangers on June 20. Rodriguez scored the game-tying run in the eighth inning as a pinch runner from a two-run RBI single by shortstop Elvis Andrus of Maracay, Venezuela.

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