Braves minor leaguer caught in prostitution sting

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When I saw the headline all I could do was to think “Please don’t be Jason Heyward! Please don’t be Jason Heyward!”  Then I remembered that it’s all but certain that Heyward will officially break camp with the big club, thus isn’t really a minor leaguer and everything was alright again.  Well, not for this dude:

Atlanta Braves minor league player Deunte Heath was arrested near the
Braves spring training home in Kissimmee, Fla. Thursday night. He is
facing prostitution charges after allegedly responding to an ad on a
classifieds web site. Heath was arrested during an undercover sting operation at a Kissimmee
townhouse according to Orlando TV station WFTV . . . Investigators say he responded to an ad online and agreed to pay $75 for
sex.

In other news, the fact that police in Kissimmee are running sting operations involving phony $75 prostitutes suggests to me that they have too much damn time on their hands. I’m not one of those people who erroneously believe that prostitution is a victimless crime — it could be in theory and if the laws were changed, but in practice it’s really not — but I would hope that public resources in that area of the vice beat would go more towards helping victimized and abused women, arresting drug dealing pimps and things of that nature than running sting operations in the suburbs.

In other other news, Deunte Heath is probably not making the Braves this year.

The Marlins made an empty threat. Giancarlo Stanton made an empty promise.

Associated Press
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I covered the main press conference about Giancarlo Stanton earlier, but afterward he and his agents fanned out to various TV shows, radio shows and reporter scrums from which some new, fun things have spun out. Part of what they’ve talked about is silly and meaningless, part of it just meaningless.

Here’s the silly and meaningless, from a Marlins official, apparently, trying to bully Stanton into accepting either the Giants or the Cardinals trades despite the fact that he told them beforehand that he was not willing to go to either of those teams:

This is silly because it comes off like a threat. Like the worst possible thing that can happen to a guy is to stay with the very team that is making the threat. It’s like telling your wife that if she does not leave you, she’s stuck with you forever.

It’s meaningless too, in that Stanton has an opt-out clause after 2020. If the Marlins could not make a trade Stanton would approve, he’d simply collect close to $90 million and then leave at age 30. Oooh, don’t throw me into that briar patch, Mr. Jeter!

Not that Stanton’s people are offering statements of serious gravitas. His agent was asked about Stanton’s opt-out rights, which he retains even though he’s now with the Yankees:

That may very well be true! He just got here and everything is going great so far. It’s totally empty, of course, because anything can happen between now and the fall of 2020. If the big time free agents of the next two years sign for the sort of money that makes Stanton look underpaid, he’ll certainly opt-out, even if he wants to stay with the Yankees. Ask Alex Rodriguez and CC Sabathia how that works. The opt-out clause is pure, unadulterated leverage for a player and unless he totally craters over the next three seasons he’ll most certainly use it, regardless of present desires.

Which, hey, that’s how things work when a big trade or free agent signing happens. Everyone who has lost looks bad and everyone who won sounds happy. Then, later, the baseball happens.