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Pitcher's Family 'Shocked' by New Twist in His Death

The investigation into Tyler Skaggs' death apparently involves a Los Angeles Angels employee
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 31, 2019 10:30 AM CDT
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In this June 29, 2019, file photo, Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Tyler Skaggs throws to the Oakland Athletics during a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

(Newser) – Looks like the probe into Tyler Skaggs' death involves a Los Angeles Angels employee—which his family called a shocking development, USA Today reports. "We have not been told the identity of the Angel employee that may be involved so I will take a pass on saying anything right now," said family attorney Rusty Hardin. "We are trying not to get in the way of the police investigation." An autopsy report into the pitcher's July 1 death, released Friday, showed alcohol and opioids in his system when the 27-year-old fatally choked on his own vomit. Now it seems Skaggs might have gotten drugs via someone on his own team. "We were shocked to learn that it may involve an employee of the Los Angeles Angels," the family said in a statement.

"We will not rest until we learn the truth about how Tyler came into possession of these narcotics, including who supplied them," they added. Angels manager Brad Ausmus, who's been openly emotional about the pitcher's death, said he was "a little surprised" by the autopsy report—but emphasized that Skaggs never complained about physical pain, per the AP. He "would be the last guy he would come to because he wants to stay in the rotation," said Ausmus. Skaggs missed all of 2015 after reconstructive elbow surgery and was out for three months in 2017 with a muscle strain. Major-league drug testing wouldn't necessarily spot opioids in his system, because it only tests for drugs of abuse if a treatment board finds due cause. (Read more drug overdose stories.)

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