Back in July Tigers pitcher Evan Reed — currently with the Toledo Mud Hens — was charged with two counts of criminal sexual conduct arising out of an alleged incident at the Motor City Casino Hotel in Detroit back in March. Today the charges have been dismissed after prosecutors failed to convince the judge presiding over the case that there was probable cause a crime was committed:
[Judge] King said he had doubts about the credibility of the 45-year-old woman who claimed Reed sexually assaulted her in a sixth-floor hotel room at Motor City Casino after the two met at a bar in Royal Oak. He said prosecutors failed to meet the burden of probable cause on accusations that Reed forced or coerced her into two sexual acts while she was physically or mentally incapacitated . . . He said there was no rape kit evidence or evidence of semen from the scene presented by prosecutors.
He also noted that the accuser’s testimony was contradicted in places by text messages she sent the night of the alleged assault.
If the case had gone to trial, Reed could have faced a sentence of 15 years. Prosecutors have the opportunity to appeal the finding of no probable cause, but they have not decided if they will or not.
Jim Salisbury of CSN Philly reports that the Phillies are close to signing free agent reliever Joaquin Benoit. An announcement is expected before the winter meetings end on Thursday.
Benoit, 39, has quietly been among the better relievers in baseball over the past seven years. This past season with the Mariners and Blue Jays, the right-hander put up an aggregate 2.81 ERA with a 52/24 K/BB ratio in 48 innings. That included a 0.38 ERA in 23 2/3 innings after the Jays acquired him from the Mariners.
Benoit suffered a torn calf muscle during a benches-clearing brawl with the Yankees near the end of the regular season. He’s expected to be healthy for spring training.
The Phillies have now added three relievers this offseason with Benoit, Pat Neshek, and David Rollins.
ESPN’s Pedro Gomez provides a previously unreported detail of the new collective bargaining agreement, agreed to by the owners and the players’ union last week. Players’ meal money for road games is being reduced from $105 to $30 per day. Teams are providing pre- and post-game meals in the visitors’ clubhouse to offset some of the decrease in meal money.
Gomez quotes an unnamed player who said, “I doubt many guys know about the money going down, nor would they have agreed to it.” All of the players Gomez contacted said they were unaware of and unhappy about the change.
Clubhouse attendants are certainly unhappy about this change, too. As Gomez notes, the attendants previously provided food for visiting teams which earned them tips from the players.
EDIT: It’s worth clarifying that chefs are required in clubhouses now as part of the new CBA, so it’s not a complete loss for the players.