1985 Pittsburgh drug trials

From BR Bullpen

In 1985, a grand jury in Pittsburgh, PA led to the most noted drug trials in baseball history. Among those called to testify were Keith Hernandez, Tim Raines, Willie Aikens, Vida Blue, Dave Parker, Lonnie Smith, Jeffrey Leonard, Rod Scurry, Dale Berra, Lee Mazzilli, Jeffrey Leonard, John Milner, Enos Cabell and Lee Lacy. Even the Pittsburgh Pirates mascot, the Pirate Parrot, was involved in the cocaine deals. Commissioner Peter Ueberroth suspended 11 players, 7 for a full year, but all reached agreements. Among those suspended who did not testify were Joaquín Andújar, Lary Sorensen and Claudell Washington. Seven drug dealers also were sentenced. The trials may have played a significant role in hurting the Hall of Fame chances of Parker, Hernandez and Raines. Aikens and Scurry both remained in headlines for legal and drug troubles for years afterwards.

Further Reading[edit]

  • Steve Beitler: "This Is Your Sport on Cocaine: The Pittsburgh Trials of 1985", in The National Pastime - A Review of Baseball History, Society for American Baseball Research, Cleveland, OH, number 26 (May, 2006), pp. 119-122.