Attention sportswriters and agents: if you get a message left for you by a hot young prospect named Montaous Walton talking up his college stats, you probably want to let that one go:
An OnMilwaukee.com investigation has revealed that someone named Montaous Walton does, indeed, exist. But that person has proven to be nothing more a name on a phone record, a voice on the other end of the line.
Montaous Walton, the baseball player, is fictional.
As OnMilwaukee.com reports, this Walton guy — or someone claiming the name — convinced various media outlets to report on his success. That’s not all: he got a couple of sports agencies to give him plane tickets and other things. Major League Baseball isn’t pleased and they want to prosecute the person behind it all.
A good bit of investigative reporting and worth the read.
The Rays have traded right-hander Jake Odorizzi to the Twins, per team announcements on Saturday evening. The Twins will receive minor league shortstop Jermaine Palacios in the deal. Despite previous speculation, recently-DFA’d outfielder Corey Dickerson was not included in the trade.
With Odorizzi, the Twins finally have the front-end starter they’ve been seeking all winter. It’s a bargain deal as well, as the 27-year-old righty is under contract through 2019 and didn’t require the club to part with any of their top-shelf prospects in the trade. Odorizzi will be looking to stage a comeback in 2018 after a dismal performance with the Rays last year, during which he eked out a career-worst 4.14 ERA, 3.8 BB/9 and 8.0 SO/9 through 143 1/3 innings.
Palacios, 21, ranked no. 27 in the Twins’ system last season. He split his year between Single-A Cedar Rapids and High-A Fort Myers, raking a combined .296/.333/.454 with 13 home runs and 20 stolen bases in 539 plate appearances. He’s expected to continue developing at shortstop, though he’s also seen limited time at second and third base during his four-year career in the minors.