Minor League Sports

Coroner: L.A. Angels pitcher, former Cedar Rapids Kernel Tyler Skaggs died of accidental overdose

Former Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Tyler Skaggs. (Jon Durr/USA TODAY Sports)
Former Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Tyler Skaggs. (Jon Durr/USA TODAY Sports)

Los Angeles Angels left-hander Tyler Skaggs died from an accidental overdose of drugs and alcohol, the Tarrant County (Texas) Medical Examiner’s Office said in a report released Friday.

Painkillers fentanyl and oxycodone, as well as alcohol, were in Skaggs’ system when he was found dead in Southland, Texas, on July 1 prior to the Angels’ series against the Rangers.

Per the report, Skaggs died by choking on his vomit without signs of trauma. He was 27.

Skaggs’ family released a statement Friday.

“We are heartbroken to learn that the passing of our beloved Tyler was the result of a combination of dangerous drugs and alcohol,” the statement said. “That is completely out of character for someone who worked so hard to become a Major League baseball player and had a very promising future in the game he loved so much.

“We are grateful for the work of the detectives in the Southlake Police Department and their ongoing investigation into the circumstances surrounding Tyler’s death. We were shocked to learn that it may involve an employee of the Los Angeles Angels. We will not rest until we learn the truth about how Tyler came into possession of these narcotics, including who supplied them. To that end, we have hired attorney Rusty Hardin to assist us.”

Oxycodone is banned pursuant to Major League Baseball’s Joint Drug Agreement while fentanyl is labeled as a “drug of abuse” under the agreement.

Skaggs pitched for the Cedar Rapids Kernels in 2010.

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