Blue Jays Minor Leaguer Van Kirk suspended

Blue Jays Minor Leaguer Van Kirk suspended

Blue Jays Minor Leaguer Van Kirk suspended

OAKLAND -- Double-A New Hampshire outfielder Brian Van Kirk received a 50-game suspension on Monday for a second violation of the Minor League drug prevention and treatment program.

Kirk tested positive for a drug of abuse and will now be forced to miss the rest of the season. His suspension goes into effect immediately and also will carry over into the beginning of next year.

The 27-year-old was hitting .278 with two homers, 29 RBIs and had a .412 on-base percentage at the time of his suspension. He spent each of the past two seasons in New Hampshire but didn't appear to have much of a future with the organization.

Van Kirk was originally taken in the 21st round of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft. He becomes the second Blue Jays' Minor Leaguer to test positive for a banned substance in the past two years after right-hander Marcus Stroman violated the drug policy in 2012.

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. Paul Casella is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @paul_casella. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.