Diamondbacks’ Andrew Saalfrank Suspended One Year For Betting On Baseball

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Arizona Diamondbacks Andrew Saalfrank Suspended One Year For Betting On Baseball

Arizona Diamondbacks left-handed pitcher Andrew Saalfrank, a reliever in Triple-A Reno for the Diamondbacks who was a part of last year’s World Series team, has been issued a one-year suspension by the MLB for betting on baseball games when he was a minor leaguer in 2021 and 2022, the commissioner’s office announced.

Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Andrew Saalfrank wagered a total of $445.87 on 29 baseball-related bets

Saalfrank wagered a total of $445.87 on 29 bets — 28 were MLB-related, the other a college baseball parlay — on games between Sept. 9, 2021, and March 9, 2022, according to MLB.

The league confirmed that Saalfrank did not appear in any of the games on which he bet, adding that he also did not bet on any games involving the Diamondbacks.

“There is no evidence to suggest — and Saalfrank denies — that any outcomes in the baseball games on which he placed bets were compromised, influenced or manipulated in any way,” the league wrote in its a press release.

Saalfrank violated MLB’s Rule 21, which states, “Any player, umpire, or club or league official or employee, who shall bet any sum whatsoever upon any baseball game in connection with which the bettor has no duty to perform, shall be declared ineligible for one year.”

At the time the bets were placed, Saalfrank was a prospect working his way back from Tommy John surgery. The penalty would have been more severe had the 26-year-old been active on the field with Arizona.

Saalfrank is one of the five MLB players to receive suspensions this week for gambling on baseball

There are no loopholes in the MLB’s rulebook when it comes to betting on baseball. A player gambling on his own team warrants the largest penalty. Saalfrank is one of five players to receive suspensions for gambling-related offenses this week.

San Diego Padres infielder/outfielder Tucupita Marcano received a lifetime ban, while four others — Saalfrank, Philadelphia Phillies infielder Jose Rodriguez, Oakland Athletics pitcher Michael Kelly, and San Diego Padres pitcher Jay Groome — were suspended for a year.

Marcano wagered more than $150,000 for 387 baseball bets. The league said he placed 231 MLB-related bets, including 25 of which were Pittsburgh Pirates games while he was a member of the Pirates. Since Marcano bet on games involving his team, he was banned for life.

Additionally, Marcano became the first active major leaguer banned under the sport’s gambling provision since New York Giants outfielder Jimmy O’Connell in 1924.

Pete Rose, MLB’s active career hits leader, agreed to a lifetime ban in 1989 after an investigation revealed that he had bet on Cincinnati Reds games while managing the team.

Saalfrank is the first Diamondbacks player suspended for betting on baseball in club history.