MLB announced today that it is suspending Mets closer Jeurys Familia for 15 games in relation to his arrest on October 31, 2016. He will remain eligible to participate in all spring training games and activities; the suspension will begin on Opening Day.
MLB released the following statement about their investigation into Familia’s arrest.
"My office has completed its investigation into the events leading up to Jeurys Familia's arrest on Oct. 31, 2016," Commissioner Rob Manfred said in making the announcement. "Mr. Familia and his wife cooperated fully throughout the investigation, including submitting to in-person interviews with MLB's Department of Investigations. My office also received cooperation from the Fort Lee (N.J.) Municipal Prosecutor. The evidence reviewed by my office does not support a determination that Mr. Familia physically assaulted his wife, or threatened her or others with physical force or harm, on Oct. 31, 2016. Nevertheless, I have concluded that Mr. Familia's overall conduct that night was inappropriate, violated the policy, and warrants discipline.
"It is clear that Mr. Familia regrets what transpired that night and takes full responsibility for his actions. Mr. Familia already has undergone 12 90-minute counseling sessions with an approved counselor specializing in the area of domestic violence, and received a favorable evaluation from the counselor regarding his willingness to take concrete steps to ensure that he is not involved in another incident of this type. Further, he has agreed to speak to other players about what he has learned through this process, and to donate time and money to local organizations aimed at the prevention of, and the treatment of victims of, domestic violence."
For his part, Familia has issued a statement as well.
"With all that has been written and discussed regarding this matter, it is important that it be known that I never physically touched, harmed or threatened my wife that evening. I did, however, act in an unacceptable manner and am terribly disappointed in myself. I am alone to blame for the problems of that evening.
"My wife and I cooperated fully with Major League Baseball’s investigation, and I’ve taken meaningful steps to assure that nothing like this will ever happen again. I have learned from this experience, and have grown as a husband, a father, and a man. I apologize to the Mets’ organization, my teammates, and all my fans. I look forward to rejoining the Mets and being part of another World Series run."
Per MLB’s statement above, those “meaningful steps” have already included a dozen 90-minute counseling sessions, as well as a commitment to donate time and money to charity. Rosenthal added:
Source: Familia will forfeit 18 days of pay, including off-days, and a rainout could increase that number slightly. Loses more than $700K.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) March 29, 2017
Familia will miss full series against the Braves, Marlins, Phillies, and the Marlins again, plus the first two games of the Mets’ series against the Phillies at Citi Field. He’ll be eligible to return on Thursday, April 20 against Philadelphia.
While Familia is serving his suspension, Addison Reed, who was the Mets’ best reliever in 2016, will handle closer duties.