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Eric Kay, a former Angels staffer who allegedly supplied fentanyl to now-deceased pitcher Tyler Skaggs, was found guilty of two counts related to his death.
Kay was found guilty on the following counts — distribution of controlled substances resulting in death and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute controlled substances in relation to Skaggs’ death.
While the defense spent most of its time proving that Skaggs had multiple sources for his drug addiction, in the end the jury still believed it was Kay who supplied the substances found in the Angels’ pitcher’s system the day he died in July of 2019.
Sentencing has been set for June 28, where Kay faces a minimum of 20 years.
Skaggs’ widow, Carli and his mother, Debbie Hetman shared an emotional hug after the verdict.
Eric Kay trial exposed MLB drug problem
Four former Angels players, including Matt Harvey, came forward to admit their past drug use. Harvey, for one, admitted to knowing of Skaggs’ drug use and helping supply him with said drugs.
While with the New York Mets and Los Angeles Angels, Harvey was considered a partier, though his drug problems went far deeper. Former Mets manager Terry Collins went on the record in some questionable interviews with SNY and local New York radio, stating that Harvey had mental health problems while with the Mets.
Opioid use in MLB has been a longstanding issue, though it was finally brought to light by Harvey and others as a way for players to perform through injury. Unfortunately, the use of painkillers often let down a dark path, as Harvey and Skaggs found out.
This is far from the last we’ve heard of MLB’s opioid problem, but for now the Kay trial offers some level of closure for Skaggs’ family and those who knew him best.