Back in 2009 a young pitcher from the Dominican Republic named Juan Collado signed with the Diamondbacks for $17,000 and even played in Arizona’s minor-league system, but it turned out his name was actually Juan Carlos Paniagua.
MLB suspended him for one year and the deal with the Diamondbacks was voided, but then once he was done sitting out Paniagua signed with the Yankees … for $1.1 million.
So falsifying documents and misrepresenting himself ended up earning Paniagua an extra $1 million. Or it did, briefly. Ben Badler of Baseball America reports that Paniagua has been suspended again and the pitcher’s lucrative deal with the Yankees has also been voided.
MLB has refused to disclose the exact nature of the suspension and apparently they haven’t even told the Yankees, but Badler notes that “one-year suspensions are usually reserved for a player who presents false information to teams about his age or his identity.”
In other words, maybe Juan Carlos Paniagua isn’t actually Juan Carlos Paniagua just like Juan Collado wasn’t actually Juan Collado. And maybe next time he’ll get $2 million.