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The Nats should have known that Carlos Alvarez wasn't who he said he was

Sep 21, 2010, 11:04 AM EDT

Remember that big stink in early 2009 in which the Nats gave a big signing bonus to a guy who was found out to be four years older than they thought he was?  And that he was, you know, a totally different person than they thought he was.  Boy, was that embarrassing! But it gets worse: Nats’ personnel knew he was a fraud and didn’t say anything after they found out:

Carlos Alvarez, who was 20 when he passed himself off to the Nationals as 16-year-old prospect Esmailyn Gonzalez, testified in June in a Dominican appeals court that he told [Nats’ DR coordinator Jose Baez] that he wasn’t in fact Gonzalez after he had signed with the team. Alvarez told the court that he confessed the fraud to Baez because the family who provided him with fake documents had tried to blackmail him. Nelson Tejada, the investigator for Major League Baseball who discovered the fraud, testified that “Baez told me that he knew of this name change” and that Baez’s mistake was “knowing [of the fraud] and not reporting it.”

Former GM Jim Bowden’s right-hand man Jose Rijo knew about it too, Alvarez testified.  The FBI has been investigating this matter too, by the way, to see if any Nats employees committed fraud, so that’s fun too.

Just something to remind Nats fans that Mike Rizzo has a lot more to rebuild in this organization than just the major league roster.

  1. CM_Wang - Sep 21, 2010 at 11:14 AM

    He’s not Esmailyn now.

  2. Todd Boss - Sep 21, 2010 at 2:29 PM

    Ok, so Baez knew and told Rijo. There’s no evidence that Rijo told Bowden (at least, no evidence yet).
    Baez, Rijo and Bowden were all summarily terminated within 3-4 days of this news breaking.
    So, what else is there to “rebuild in the organization?” I think time and again we’ve discussed that Bowden was a horrible GM and this incident was further proof of that. But your implication that somehow there are still bad apples in the organization is insulting (to say the least) to Rizzo and what his team are trying to do.
    Craig: How come you never write articles bemoaning the decade-long damage done to our franchise by MLB by allowing Loria to strip the club bare of talent evaluators when he sold the Expos and was handed the Marlins (and its $50m annual profits) by the crook commissioner Bud Selig? Or discussing how we were in first place at the all star break in 2005 but made no moves and slumped to a last place finish? Or how we didn’t call anyone up at the roster expansion date for a couple years because MLB wanted to save the roster salary? Or the fact that an incompetent GM was put in place by MLB in the first place, resulting essentially in WASTED drafts in 2006 and 2007 as Bowden picked head cases and toolsy guys. Or his constant acquiring of troublemakers at the MLB level (Felipe Lopez, Dukes, Dmitry Young, Milledge, etc)?
    No, instead you somehow group the non-Lerner, non-Kasten, non Washington Fan base issues of the previous regimes on the current team unfairly. I’d like to see you actually write a piece mentioning the Washington franchise that is actually unbiased in this factor, instead of lazily cherry picking whatever bad news you can find mentioning our team and writing your little pot shots on this blog.

  3. dprat - Sep 21, 2010 at 6:23 PM

    Wow, hope you’re taking your blood pressure medicine. Seriously.
    Or are you still upset that Craig called you out on that whole “I can’t believe they’re giving away free shit to so-called ‘Nats fans’ who don’t even wear Nationals’ flair” thing?

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