Ex-MLB SP Esteban Loaiza Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for Cocaine Possession

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 8, 2019

FILE - In this Sept. 21, 2007 file photo, Los Angeles Dodgers' Esteban Loaiza, of Mexico, throws a pitch against the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first inning of a baseball game in Phoenix. Former All-Star pitcher Loaiza - who earned a total of more than $43 million over 14 seasons - is heading to court accused of drug dealing involving 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of suspected cocaine. The 46-year-old retired Major League Baseball player is scheduled to appear in court in Chula Vista, Calif., south of San Diego, on Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2018. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)
Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press

Former Major League Baseball All-Star Esteban Loaiza was sentenced to three years in prison Friday. 

Per the Associated Press (via ESPN.com), Loaiza's sentence came seven months after he pleaded guilty to possessing 44 pounds of cocaine with intent to distribute. 

Loaiza was arrested by the San Diego County Sheriff's Department after being pulled over for driving a vehicle believed to be used for smuggling drugs in February 2018. 

Officers also obtained a warrant to search Loaiza's house, which led to the discovery of packages of drugs that included the cocaine. 

When Loaiza pleaded guilty to the charges last August, he was facing between 10 years to life in prison. At the sentencing Friday, Loaiza's attorney said his client will be deported back to Mexico after finishing his incarceration. 

Loaiza played for eight teams during his 14-year MLB career. He was named to back-to-back All-Star teams in 2003-04. The right-hander finished second in AL Cy Young voting with the Chicago White Sox in 2003 with a 21-9 record and 2.90 ERA in 226.1 innings. 

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