Colton Welker, a member of the Rockies 40 man roster and one of their top prospects, has been suspended for 80 games for testing positive for Dehydrochlormethyltestosterone (DHCMT), a banned substance.
The suspension, announced by the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball on Thursday, is effective immediately. Welker was currently with Triple- A Albuquerque.
"The Colorado Rockies are disappointed to announce that infielder Colton Welker has tested positive for a substance banned under the terms of Major League Baseball’s Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, resulting in his 80-game suspension," the team said in a statement. "The Rockies organization fully supports MLB’s Drug Prevention and Treatment Program and we believe that Colton will learn from this experience."
Welker was on the taxi squad for the first road trip and was expected to be called up at some point this season. Welker, in a statement through the MLBPA, said that he has never willingly or intentionally ingested any substance to enhance his athletic performance.
He added that he was told by the Players Association that the amount detected was so minimal that it would not have enhanced his performance.
"I understand that a number of other players, like me, have tested positive for this metabolite at microscopic levels, and I intend to join them in seeking answers as to how this is happening in order to clear my name," he said in the statement.
The Rockies infield options have shrunk recently, with the trade of Nolan Arenado and injuries to Chris Owings and Brendan Rodgers.
Welker typically plays just third base, but picked up playing time at first in recent seasons. Welker batted .252 in 2019 with Double-A Hartford while dealing with a shoulder injury. He was added to the Rockies 40 man roster after the 2020 season and spent the beginning of this year at the alternative training site.
He was selected in the fourth round of the 2016 draft out of Stoneman Douglas High School.