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Former White Sox pitcher Esteban Loaiza pleads guilty in drug case

Former White Sox pitcher Esteban Loaiza pleaded guilty to federal drug charges and faces a minimum of 10 years and a maximum of life in prison. Sun-Times file photo

Former White Sox pitcher Esteban Loaiza pleaded guilty to federal drug charges and faces a minimum of 10 years and a maximum of life in prison.

Loaiza, 46, was arrested in February after authorities found 44 pounds of cocaine hidden in a vehicle at his townhouse near San Diego. Investigators said Loaiza drove across the border into Mexico on the day of his arrest.

In 14 seasons, Loaiza went 126-114 with a 4.65 ERA and earned more than $43 million. He won 30 games in parts of two seasons with the Sox, including a remarkable 2003 campaign when he went 21-9 with a 2.90 ERA and was selected to his first All-Star Game.

His sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 2.