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Former Sox pitcher Loaiza arrested on drug trafficking charges

SAN DIEGO — Former Major League Baseball pitcher Esteban Loaiza has been arrested in California on suspicion of smuggling cocaine and heroin.

The charges involve possessing and transporting more than 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of cocaine and heroin for sale. The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department says Loaiza was booked into jail Friday evening and held in lieu of $200,000 bail.

It was not immediately known if Loaiza has hired a lawyer, and he could not be reached for comment.

The 46-year-old played for numerous teams between 1995 and 2008, starting with the Pittsburgh Pirates and concluding with his second stint with the Chicago White Sox.

The right-hander won 21 games for the White Sox in 2003 and has the second-most wins of any Mexican-born pitcher in MLB history.

Loaiza, who was born in Tijuana, Mexico, was briefly married to the late singer Jenni Rivera, who died in a plane crash in 2012.

–Associated Press

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