Fernando Tatis Jr. apologizes for 'mistakes' after PED suspension, says he will undergo shoulder surgery

Fernando Tatis Jr. will at least be using his unplanned free time productively.

The San Diego Padres star addressed the media on Tuesday for the first time since he was suspended 80 games after testing positive for Clostebol, a performance-enhancing substance banned by MLB. Tatis expressed contrition and blame for what he described as "mistakes."

Among the people he specifically apologized to were Padres owner Peter Seidler and president of baseball operations A.J. Preller.

This content is not available due to your privacy preferences.
Update your settings here to see it.

Tatis' statement:

"I would like to start this day just by saying I'm truly sorry. I am. I'm really sorry. I have let so many people down, I have lost so much love from people. I have failed the front office of the San Diego Padres, Peter Seidler, A.J Preller, and I have failed the fans of this city. I have failed my country, I have failed my family, parents. I'm really sorry for my mistakes. I have seen my dreams turn into my worst nightmares in a couple days, a couple months. There's no one to blame other than myself. I made a mistake."

Tatis also apologized to his teammates in a players-only meeting, with starting pitcher Joe Musgrove saying there was "some tough love" in the room.

The suspension will keep Tatis out for the rest of the regular season, this year's postseason and the first few weeks of the 2023 season. Few, if any, PED suspensions have been as shocking and costly to the player's team as the 23-year-old Tatis, who is under contract through 2034 on the $340 million extension signed before the 2021 season.

Tatis reportedly told the media he took the Clostebol as part of a medication to treat a skin infection starting in June and continued to take it until he tested positive in late July. He apparently did not run the medication by the Padres' team doctors, which players are typically supposed to do with any drug to avoid this exact situation.

That explanation is line with what Tatis' camp (basically his parents) has been saying to explain how the drug got in his body, though some experts are skeptical.

Fernando Tatis Jr. to undergo long-awaited shoulder surgery

There was at least a silver lining for the Padres, as Tatis said he plans to undergo shoulder surgery to repair his labrum while waiting to return to the field. He reportedly said he expects to be fully healthy by the time the suspension ends.

That is major news for the Padres, the state of their shortstop's shoulder was one of their biggest issues before, you know, the PED suspension and multiple motorcycle crashes.

Tatis' shoulder issues go back to his days as a minor leaguer, but they jumped out front and center last year when Tatis had his shoulder pop out five times between spring training and the regular season, per the San Diego Union-Tribune. Despite all that, Tatis opted against undergoing surgery to fix the issue in the offseason.

Now, with a little more time to rehab thanks to the suspension, Tatis is getting the surgery, likely to the Padres' relief. Had he not, there was a pretty clear doomsday scenario for the team, as Tatis could have returned from his suspension in 2023 and sustained a serious shoulder injury, knocking him out for two of the three seasons in which San Diego had Juan Soto under contract.

San Diego Padres' Fernando Tatis Jr., center, speaks to the media about his 80 game suspension from baseball after testing positive for Clostebol, a performance-enhancing substance in violation of Major League Baseball's Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program, Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, in San Diego. (AP Photo/Derrick Tuskan)
Fernando Tatis Jr. blamed his PED suspension on a skin medication. (AP Photo/Derrick Tuskan)