Wander Franco Is In Trouble (Grooming/Pedo Warning)

mauf

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Setting aside his off-field troubles for a moment, you'd think that the pre-arb bonus pool thing wouldn't apply to a guy that signed an 11 year contract that paid him $2M last season (more than twice the typical pre-arb salary) and guarantees him nine figures over the life of the deal.
The MLBPA doesn’t have much in the way of collectivist impulses. The NFLPA or the NBPA would likely follow the approach you describe, but I’m not surprised at all that the MLBPA took the position that this was a pool of money negotiated for players with less than 3 years service (or whatever the arbitration cut-off is), and whatever arrangements the players made with their clubs for the long term are their own business.
 

epraz

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It's not just Franco, a lot of these guys have signed long term deals:

Julio Rodríguez $1,865,349
Corbin Carroll 1,812,337
Adley Rutschman 1,798,439
Spencer Strider 1,692,833
Justin Steele 1,673,331
Kyle Bradish 1,666,786
Félix Bautista 1,467,094
Gunnar Henderson 1,428,001
Jonah Heim 1,060,306
Tanner Bibee 1,016,931
Bobby Witt Jr. 836,848
William Contreras 813,344
Wander Franco 706,761
 

Scoops Bolling

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Yeah, the idea of that pool is really just intended to give the best pre-arb guys an income at least a bit more commeasurate with their impact. It's intended to benefit the cream of the crop.
 

Manuel Aristides

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Has he been formally charged?
No. And while I do believe where there's smoke there's probably fire with a case like this... I haven't even seen "warrant" much less "arrest" or "charge." I think people are largely right to suspect it's all over for Wander once it's all said and done, but... definitely not there yet.
 

Ale Xander

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seems he’s on the lam, no? That kind of takes away, psychologically in public opinion,
not legally of course, some of what presumption of innocence he may have had.
 

VORP Speed

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seems he’s on the lam, no? That kind of takes away, psychologically in public opinion,
not legally of course, some of what presumption of innocence he may have had.
The articles said the authorities went to his houses to question him about the case and left word that he needed to appear with his lawyer to answer questions. So not really on the lam, at least not yet.
 

Rovin Romine

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The articles said the authorities went to his houses to question him about the case and left word that he needed to appear with his lawyer to answer questions. So not really on the lam, at least not yet.
This seems to be moving very slowly - 4 months since there was reporting a claim had been filed. I don't know how things work in the DR, but the pool of useful evidence for this sort of thing is pretty small. You'd have the testimony of the victims, digital communications (photos/texts), and corroborating evidence from third parties such as them knowing each other, or hearing statements the victims or Wander made, etc. There's not really a lot of "silver bullet" evidence that lurks at the fringes of these types of things.
 

Sausage in Section 17

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This seems to be moving very slowly - 4 months since there was reporting a claim had been filed. I don't know how things work in the DR, but the pool of useful evidence for this sort of thing is pretty small. You'd have the testimony of the victims, digital communications (photos/texts), and corroborating evidence from third parties such as them knowing each other, or hearing statements the victims or Wander made, etc. There's not really a lot of "silver bullet" evidence that lurks at the fringes of these types of things.
So if they can't convict him of these allegations, I wonder where that leaves him as far as MLB and being able to play.

As demonstrated by the Trevor Bauer allegations, one need not be convicted in order to be banned. The details that emerged in the Bauer case were quite damning in their own right, and IMO became the basis for him being banned. Not many details have emerged about Franco's behavior yet.
 

Ale Xander

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So if they can't convict him of these allegations, I wonder where that leaves him as far as MLB and being able to play.

As demonstrated by the Trevor Bauer allegations, one need not be convicted in order to be banned. The details that emerged in the Bauer case were quite damning in their own right, and IMO became the basis for him being banned. Not many details have emerged about Franco's behavior yet.
Isn't that a combination of how reticent the victims are to come forward and the location/country, both of which "favor" Franco v. Bauer.
 

Sausage in Section 17

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Isn't that a combination of how reticent the victims are to come forward and the location/country, both of which "favor" Franco v. Bauer.
I think the details are coming.

As RR points out, in such cases, it is often "he said" versus "she said", and this often is insufficient legal proof for the allegations. In Bauer's case, he escaped legally based on the idea that his encounters were consensual, but was banned based on his willingness to engage in "legal" abuse and degradation of women. Franco won't be able to make any distinctions about this being consensual, but I would expect him to deny it happened, which Bauer couldn't.

So he'll deny it, and it might be hard to prove otherwise, legally. Whether there could be some other "bar" he fails to clear in the court of public opinion that might still make MLB want to ban him is what I am really wondering.
 

Sad Sam Jones

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There was enough smoke coming from this when it first became public that his career in MLB is unquestionably over. There is no version that's going to come out that exonerates him to the public's satisfaction. No conviction necessary and really no official ban necessary. Even if he's not convicted of anything, no team is going to want to deal with the subsequent fallout.
 

Rovin Romine

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As RR points out, in such cases, it is often "he said" versus "she said", and this often is insufficient legal proof for the allegations.
While this is generally true, I wasn't making that point upthread, nor opining on the strength of the case against Franco (there are no publicly reported facts to make reasonable guesses off of.)

I was pointing out that the fact and evidence gathering for this sort of crime normally happens very rapidly. For example, if they texted each other nude pics, the victim normally has them. But it's not like the cops need to retrace his possible steps and pull hours of random security footage to try to get an ID or something.

Franco won't be able to make any distinctions about this being consensual, but I would expect him to deny it happened, which Bauer couldn't.
We really don't know what the evidence is at this point, or even what the allegations are.

Whether there could be some other "bar" he fails to clear in the court of public opinion that might still make MLB want to ban him is what I am really wondering.
Again, we just don't know, as it really depends on the facts. If this is something that would be legal in under a Romeo/Juliet scheme in some jurisdictions, there's probably not going to be an enormous social outcry, absent allegations of violence or the like. If the ages are fairly far apart, or there are multiple underage victims, he's most likely just as sunk as Bauer is.
 

Mr. Stinky Esq.

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If the allegations are true, I’m pretty confident there are electronic records, communications data, etc. that would corroborate the allegations. It’s unlikely to be as simple as “he said, she said”. To go deeper on that subject, V&N might be a more appropriate venue.
 

Ale Xander

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Marciano490

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That might answer the early questions about what’s taking so long. I assume the police have made requests for info or interviews that Wander has delayed or avoided that has made the investigation difficult to conclude. Obviously wouldn’t be surprised the DR authorities would want to cover everything before bringing charges, given how high profile the case is.
 

Mugsy's Jock

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I'd assume there's enough bad juju that his MLB career is over. Even if there aren't formal convictions, who'd want to take the PR risk? [Aside from the Kansas City Chiefs.]

Could he find a home in the KBO or Japanese leagues? Maybe Taiwan? How about Venezuela? Or go full Manny and try Australia and Roumania (or whatever)?
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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Is everyone else getting the "potentially sensitive content" warning on the image in those tweets? Strange since it's just Franco and his lawyers standing in front of what I assume are interview rooms at the DA office.
 

Late Yclept Chanticleer

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Is everyone else getting the "potentially sensitive content" warning on the image in those tweets? Strange since it's just Franco and his lawyers standing in front of what I assume are interview rooms at the DA office.
I am, and on the one in post #325 that's just a closeup of Franco sitting in the dugout during a game. Guessing the sensitive content flags are AI generated, the bot just sees Wander's name, knows he's at the center of a sensitive content story, and goes scorched earth.
 

Sausage in Section 17

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I have no experience with Dominican law, but presumably if he’s under arrest, we should soon learn why?

edit- I guess technically, he was arrested for failing to show up for his initial interview. Hector Gomez seems to be the only one so far indicating that he will be charged, which some reporting I’ve seen suggests will happen on Wednesday.
 

mauf

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I have no experience with Dominican law, but presumably if he’s under arrest, we should soon learn why?

edit- I guess technically, he was arrested for failing to show up for his initial interview. Hector Gomez seems to be the only one so far indicating that he will be charged, which some reporting I’ve seen suggests will happen on Wednesday.
Gomez has been killing it on this story from the outset. I’m assuming his reporting is correct until proven otherwise.
 

Hank Scorpio

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I'd assume there's enough bad juju that his MLB career is over. Even if there aren't formal convictions, who'd want to take the PR risk? [Aside from the Kansas City Chiefs.]

Could he find a home in the KBO or Japanese leagues? Maybe Taiwan? How about Venezuela? Or go full Manny and try Australia and Roumania (or whatever)?
If he’s not convicted, do the Rays still have grounds to void his contract?

He’s signed for a lot of years and a lot of money. Not so much that eating his contract would put heavy restraints on a franchise’s luxury tax concerns (and we are talking about Tampa…)

There’s also a lot less spotlight in Tampa. I think they void his contract if they can. IF they can. But if they’re stuck paying him, I wouldn’t be shocked if he sticks around - assuming no conviction.
 

Yaz4Ever

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Would anyone be willing to take on his contract (with TB paying much of it) if not formally charged or found guilty? Trevor Bauer is still unemployed. Although, there are others who seem to continue to find work.
 

Red(s)HawksFan

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If he’s not convicted, do the Rays still have grounds to void his contract?

He’s signed for a lot of years and a lot of money. Not so much that eating his contract would put heavy restraints on a franchise’s luxury tax concerns (and we are talking about Tampa…)

There’s also a lot less spotlight in Tampa. I think they void his contract if they can. IF they can. But if they’re stuck paying him, I wouldn’t be shocked if he sticks around - assuming no conviction.
Franco is on the restricted list for the time being, so they're not paying him and won't have to pay him for the time he's away dealing with his legal problems. If he somehow gets out of it and is free and clear to resume his career, I'm not sure there's grounds for voiding the remainder of his contract. The Dodgers didn't get out of Bauer's contract. They might have saved paying him while he was suspended but they eventually released him and paid him the remaining salary he was owed once his suspension ended (~$23M for the 2023 season). I expect it would be the same for the Rays.
 

Rovin Romine

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Would anyone be willing to take on his contract (with TB paying much of it) if not formally charged or found guilty? Trevor Bauer is still unemployed. Although, there are others who seem to continue to find work.
Sex crimes are pretty much third rail stuff in the US. But even so, it depends on the facts.

How would you feel employing (or rooting for) someone who, when 19, slept with someone who was a month shy of 18? I'm guessing it wouldn't send you into shock or anything. Now what about 21 and 12?
 

Yaz4Ever

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Sex crimes are pretty much third rail stuff in the US. But even so, it depends on the facts.

How would you feel employing (or rooting for) someone who, when 19, slept with someone who was a month shy of 18? I'm guessing it wouldn't send you into shock or anything. Now what about 21 and 12?
I'm 1,000% in agreement. If we're talking young kids, he deserves whatever happens. If we're talking about a 19yo prospect hooking up with a 17yo, it's not as clear cut. I'll wait for facts before passing judgement, but it's not looking good.
 

LoweTek

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Franco is on the restricted list for the time being, so they're not paying him and won't have to pay him for the time he's away dealing with his legal problems. If he somehow gets out of it and is free and clear to resume his career, I'm not sure there's grounds for voiding the remainder of his contract. The Dodgers didn't get out of Bauer's contract. They might have saved paying him while he was suspended but they eventually released him and paid him the remaining salary he was owed once his suspension ended (~$23M for the 2023 season). I expect it would be the same for the Rays.
He is apparently getting paid and accruing service time:
The Rays signed Franco to an 11-year, $182 million contract in November 2021. The team put him back on the 40-man roster last month since administrative leave is only applicable during the regular season. He will continue to be paid and accrue service time while he is away from the team.
USA Today
 

Rovin Romine

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He is apparently getting paid and accruing service time:

USA Today
If he's done, where would that rank on the all-time-worst contracts? $182M for 83 games in 2022 with an awful showing in a WC loss to Cleveland. Then 132 games in 2023. Arguably he helped push the team into post-season contention both years.

8.1 fWAR.
 

VORP Speed

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If he's done, where would that rank on the all-time-worst contracts? $182M for 83 games in 2022 with an awful showing in a WC loss to Cleveland. Then 132 games in 2023. Arguably he helped push the team into post-season contention both years.

8.1 fWAR.
Contract heavily backloaded so he’s been paid very little so far…$8m total to date. Due another $2m for 2024. If contract gets voided, financial hit would be pretty minimal. If he gets released without contract being voided, then, yeah.
 

jon abbey

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If he's done, where would that rank on the all-time-worst contracts? $182M for 83 games in 2022 with an awful showing in a WC loss to Cleveland. Then 132 games in 2023. Arguably he helped push the team into post-season contention both years.

8.1 fWAR.
It's going to be pretty impossible to top Strasburg's deal after they won the WS in 2019, he got 7/245 and has pitched 31 innings total since then, 6.89 ERA.
 

VORP Speed

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Have seen in a couple of articles from the Dominican press today that the mother of the accuser is also being detained by the authorities.
 

shaggydog2000

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He is apparently getting paid and accruing service time:

USA Today
I thought players only got paid during the season, so not in spring training or the offseason? I think that changed for the MiLB players, but I didn't think it had for the major leaguers. Service time would be the same right? If they put him back on administrative leave at the beginning of next season, wouldn't that mean he wouldn't get paid or accrue any service time ever again if they just keep putting him back on leave? I don't know if they can do that forever, but I this sounds like it's just a technicality.
 

BigSoxFan

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It's going to be pretty impossible to top Strasburg's deal after they won the WS in 2019, he got 7/245 and has pitched 31 innings total since then, 6.89 ERA.
Yup. Strasburg will probably forever hold that title but Rendon is probably up there. Similar contract amount and the Angels got 1 good COVID season out of him and then disaster 3 years straight. Never healthy and sucks in the rare instance he is.