Former Los Angeles Angels employee Eric Kay has been charged with distributing fentanyl in connection with Tyler Skaggs' death. According to court documents obtained by TMZ, Kay was hit with the charge on Friday. Prosecutors claim to have a Kay and Skaggs' text conversation, which took place the night of the pitcher's overdose. In the message, Kay asks "Hoe [sic] many?" ... to which Skaggs said, "Just a few like 5." It is believed Kay provided "30 milligram oxycodone pills" to Skaggs multiple times.
Skaggs was found dead in his hotel room in Southlake, Texas in July 2019, just hours before the Angels were set to play the Texas Rangers. In the toxicology report, it stated the cause of death was a mix of "alcohol, fentanyl and oxycodone intoxication with terminal aspiration of gastric contents." On Friday afternoon, the Angels released a statement on the situation.
"It has been more than a year since the tragic passing of Tyler Skaggs, and all of us affected by this loss continue to grieve," the team said. "The circumstances surrounding his death are a tragedy that has impacted countless individuals and families. The Angels Organization had fully cooperated with Law Enforcement and Major League Baseball. Additionally, in order to comprehensively understand the circumstances that led to his death, we hired a former federal prosecutor to conduct an independent investigation."
The Angels went on to say there was "unacceptable behavior inconsistent with our code of conduct" and took steps to address the incident. They also said that no person in management was ware, or informed, of any employee providing opioids to any player, nor that Tyler was using opioids." Back in March, a grand jury in Texas was hearing evidence that could lead to criminal charges related to Skaggs' death.
"It means there's at least some concern about how widespread this incident might be by those who provided drugs, were involved in the activities, knew about them, may have made misrepresentations, whatever the connection might be," Laurie Levenson, a Loyola Law School professor and former federal prosecutor told the Los Angeles Times when talking about the meaning of a grand jury getting involved.
Skaggs started his pro baseball career with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2012. He spent two seasons in Arizona before joining the Los Angeles Angels in 2014. Skaggs posted a 4.41 career ERA with 28 wins and 38 losses. He was 27 years old.