Apparently, for the first time in MLB History, a umpire was relieved of his duties for failing a drug test. Brian Runge, as of June 14, was no longer on the umpire list and a triple-A umpire was promoted to fill in his place. According to ESPN, the last time a triple-A ump was promoted during the middle of the season was back in 2000, and that was only due to an injury.
It was reported that there were two witnesses who knew that Runge had failed at least one drug test, and made a deal to stay on the active umpire list. He later failed to meet those terms, and was removed from the list.
This was taken from the article on ESPN.com,
The 43-year-old Runge didn’t work in the majors after last Aug. 30 while dealing with a knee injury. He called spring training games this year and later did several Triple-A games, but hadn’t been back in the big leagues during the regular season.
Runge joined the MLB umpiring staff in 1999. He worked playoffs three times and last year’s All-Star Game.
In the news lately, we’ve been hearing a lot about players using drugs and failing drug tests, but nothing about umpires doing the same. Well if some of you had no idea that the professional umpires go through similar drug tests to those of the players, now you can say you learned something new today!