An alleged age-fraudster is arrested in the Dominican Republic

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Lost in all of the Hall of Fame hubbub is a story that has some pretty big implications for baseball on-the-field:

An influential baseball scout who was arrested in the Dominican Republic on Tuesday allegedly gave new identities to his players to make them appear younger – and therefore more appealing to major league teams – to obtain professional contracts.

Victor Baez was charged by Dominican authorities with fraud and falsifying documents. A press statement released by Dominican police said the arrest represents a crackdown on scouts who use fraudulent documents, visas and passports to obtain commissions from players’ contracts.

We first started hearing a lot of stories about age-falsification following immigration restrictions imposed post-9/11.  It’s not likely that the problem has gone away, however. After all, to avoid detecting of phony documents by immigration people, one need only get fake foreign documents earlier so that they appear to be more legitimate.  The arrest of Baez shows that the practice is still flourishing.

Video: Corey Dickerson breaks scoreless tie with walk-off home run

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Neither the Pirates nor the Tigers could manage any offense during Thursday afternoon’s game at PNC Park. That is, until outfielder Corey Dickerson launched a walk-off solo home run off of Alex Wilson with one out in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Dickerson, 28, has been solid for the Pirates for the first month of the season. He’s batting .314/.348/.500 with a pair of home runs, 13 RBI, and 13 runs scored in 92 plate appearances. The Pirates acquired him from the Rays in late February in exchange for journeyman pitcher Daniel Hudson and Single-A infielder Tristan Gray.