The United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has launched an investigation into where former Los Angeles Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs acquired the drugs that eventually led to his death, multiple sources told T.J. Quinn of ESPN's Outside the Lines.
Skaggs was found dead in his Texas hotel room on July 1 during an Angels road trip. His toxicology report and autopsy, which were released last month by the Tarrant County medical examiner, revealed that he had the opioid fentanyl in his system - as well as oxycodone and ethanol - and an elevated blood-alcohol level at the time of his death, according to Quinn. He was found to have choked on his own vomit.
A source told Quinn that it was the traces of fentanyl which led the DEA to open an investigation.
The use of fentanyl and other opioids has become an ongoing crisis in the United States. A report earlier this month by Kate Linthicum of the Los Angeles Times found that the drug was responsible for over 31,000 deaths in the past year, citing the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The DEA joins the Angels, Major League Baseball, and Skaggs' family in an investigation into his death. Shortly after the autopsy results were announced, the Skaggs family released a statement alluding to the possibility that an Angels employee played a role in the pitcher's death.
An Angels spokesperson told Quinn that the team "continue(s) to cooperate with law enforcement on this important matter."
MLB does not currently test its players for opioids, but the league and players' union are expected to discuss adding them to the drug-testing program this winter.