Eric Kay Sentenced to 22 Years in Tyler Skaggs Death

Eric Kay
AP Photo/LM Otero

Eric Kay was employed for the Los Angles Angels for 23 years, from 1996-Skaggs death in 2019. He was the organization’s communications director.

What Happened to Tyler Skaggs?

Tyler Skaggs, 27, was a pitcher for the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Los Angles Angels. The Angels drafted Skaggs in 2009 but traded him to the Diamondback for Dan Haren. He succeed with the Diamondbacks farm system and had two All-Star Futures appearances. However, spent some time down in the minor leagues and ended up back in the Angels organization. As he was the fifth member of the starting rotation. Ending with a career ERA of 4.41, 476 strikeouts and a record of 28-38.

In 2019, while on a road series against the Texas Rangers, Skaggs was found unresponsive in his hotel room. He was found dead later that same day. It was determined that Tyler choked on his vomit while having ethanol, fentanyl and oxycodone in his system. A month later, Eric Kay an ex-employee of the Angels was arrested for his death. To honor Skaggs the Angels wore a number 45 patch on their jerseys for the duration of the 2019 season.

Eric Kays 22 Year Sentencing

Originally, Kay denied his involvement in Skaggs death. However, evidence showed text messages between Skaggs and Kay from the day of his death to bring pills up to the hotel room. As it was believed he gave counterfeit pills. Former Angels players such as Matt Harvey, CJ Cron, Mike Morin and Cameron Bedrosian testified against Kay. The players said he was the only person in the organization they got pills from. Throughout, the case Eric insulted Skaggs and his family by calling them “white trash” and putting a false narrative on his name to the media. He even went on to insult the jurors saying “fat, sloppy, toothless and unemployed”.

Judge Terry Means sentenced Eric Kay, 48, to 22 years in Fort Worth Federal Prison. Kay was found guilty of the distribution of a controlled substance resulting in death and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute controlled substances. He was charged with the distribution of pills for all the five players including Skaggs. Judge Means said, “what the guilty verdict and sentencing proves is even if you sell only a small number of pills and one of those pills causes the death of an individual, you will be held responsible and sentenced to the fullest extent allowed by our judicial system.” Although Skaggs’ family will continue without him they got one step closer to justice and healing.

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