The trial of Eric Kay, the former Angels communications director charged with distributing the opioids that caused the death of pitcher Tyler Skaggs, saw some important developments come to light on Tuesday morning, as four former Halos players—Matt Harvey, C.J. Cron, Mike Morin and Cam Bedrosian—testified that they had also been given oxycodone pills by Kay during their tenure with the club.
The first of the former Angels to testify on Tuesday was Harvey, who was subpoenaed by the government and granted immunity in order to get him to take the stand.
During his testimony, Harvey revealed that he had given Skaggs Percocet pills on multiple occasions during his lone season with the Angels in 2019, including a few days before his death on July 1. He also mentioned that Skaggs had discussed using oxycodone with him in Spring Training that year and that he had tried oxycodone given to him by Skaggs at one point during the season.
Harvey said he's been friends with Skaggs and discussed oxycodone use when they became closer in ST of 2019. He said Skaggs showed him a bag with 5 pills at one point.— Sam Blum (@SamBlum3) February 15, 2022
Harvey also acknowledged past use of cocaine, but said it's not impacting his memory/ability to testify.
Harvey: Skaggs asked him for pills before a couple of road trips in June '19. Including one where he said he wanted oxy to feel "loosey goosey" before a start.— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) February 15, 2022
In regard to Kay, Harvey said that he had received a blue oxycodone pill from him after being informed that he wouldn’t be joining the Angels on their road trip to Texas on June 30 (he had been on the injured list at the time with a back strain and wouldn’t be activated off of it until July 13) but left it in his locker overnight after deciding not to take it. Upon hearing the news of Skaggs’s death, Harvey said he threw the pill away out of fear something might happen to him if he took it.
Harvey says in June 30 2019, the day the Angels flew to Texas, he found out last minute he wasn't going. Was upset to miss out and hid from other players. Says he discussed getting a blue oxy from Kay, Kay put it in his locker. Didn't take it that day. Next day...— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) February 15, 2022
Perhaps the most alarming part of Harvey’s testimony was his description of the drug culture pervasive around both the Angels and baseball as a whole. He mentioned that he and Skaggs had used oxycodone in both the dugout and the clubhouse at Angel Stadium, and that Skaggs that told him that he had crushed and snorted oxycodone off of the toilet paper dispensers in the clubhouse bathroom.
Harvey also said that it was common for players to use a combination of oxycodone and acetaminophen (also known as Tylenol), and that he felt that guys were looking to do what they could to play through pain and stay on the field as much as possible.
Harvey says he used in clubhouse and dugout. Skaggs told him he crushed and snorted oxy on the toilet paper dispenser in the clubhouse bathroom.— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) February 15, 2022
Harvey is describing culture of MLB, guys desperate to stay on field and play through injuries.— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) February 15, 2022
The next player to take the stand after Harvey’s testimony concluded was former Angels first baseman C.J. Cron, who said that he had gotten pills from Kay eight different times, including once while he was with the Tampa Bay Rays in 2018 after being traded there by the Halos early that year.
He described that while visiting Anaheim on a road trip with the Rays, he had arranged for Skaggs to get oxycodone pills from Kay and drop them off at his team hotel, and that he paid Kay for them once he arrived at Angel Stadium.
Cron said he received pills from Kay 8 times. Called it a "dumb decision."— Sam Blum (@SamBlum3) February 15, 2022
He also got the pills an additional time from Kay, when the Rays came to play the Angels in the 2018. Cron was on the Rays.
He said he had no oxycodone source on the Rays.
CJ Cron testified buying oxycodone pills from Eric Kay eight times, including once after he left the Angels when he played for the Rays in 2018. Cron said Skaggs dropped the pills off for him at the Rays' team hotel. He said he gave Kay the money at Angel Stadium.— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) February 15, 2022
After Cron was former Angels reliever Mike Morin, who played with the club from 2014-2017. Morin testified that Skaggs had introduced him to the possibility of getting pain medication to deal with the effects of thoracic outlet syndrome. He also said that Kay had given him oxycodone pills five or six times, and that he stopped using them in 2018 after leaving the Angels.
Morin said Kay gave him pills around 5-6 times, and usually around 5-6 pills. A couple times he provided 15-20 pills. Exchange would happen in clubhouse cubby.— Sam Blum (@SamBlum3) February 15, 2022
Morin says in May '19 Skaggs said he was off oxy. Coincides with time Kay was in treatment.— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) February 15, 2022
Now cross-examination for Morin.
The final former Angels player to testify was reliever Cam Bedrosian, who regularly pitched for the club from 2014-2020. Bedrosian said that he had gotten oxycodone pills from Kay on one occasion, but returned them back to Kay after not liking the way they made him feel. He also mentioned that he had bought pills from Kay one other time after this.
Cam Bedrosian also testified that he bought oxycodone pills from Eric Kay while he played for the Angels. He said he bought a few once. He said he took one pill, didn't like how it felt and gave the rest back to Kay. He said he bought pills from Kay "maybe one other time."— Jorge Castillo (@jorgecastillo) February 15, 2022
Bedrosian learned of Skaggs death: "I was scared. I've taken those a couple of times. There's a chance I could have (inaud) the same thing."— T.J. Quinn (@TJQuinnESPN) February 15, 2022