Fausto Carmona, whose real name is reportedly Roberto Hernandez Heredia, was arrested in the Dominican Republic on Thursday for allegedly falsifying his identity. We’re slowly learning more details about how he was exposed.
ESPN’s Pedro Gomez reported on “Outside the Lines” yesterday that Carmona was outed several weeks ago on a popular radio show in Santo Domingo by the mother of the real Fausto Carmona.
You can watch video of Gomez’s report here.
The belief is that Carmona has been paying the family of the real Carmona for the use of his identification and refused to increase hush money payments after the Indians picked up his $7 million club option for 2012 in October. Carmona made $6.1 million with the Indians last season. The U.S. government began an investigation after Carmona was outed on the radio show and he was arrested when he went to apply for his work visa earlier this week.
Carmona was released from jail yesterday on $13,000 bond. He’s actually 31 years old, three years older than previously believed, so many have wondered whether the Indians have just cause to void his contract. According to the Associated Press, Indians general manager Chris Antonetti refused to comment on the situation yesterday, only saying that they are “still gathering information.”
At the very least, it appears the Indians are preparing for the possibility that Carmona will not be granted entry into the United States in time for the start of the season. The club acquired right-hander Kevin Slowey from the Rockies yesterday as some insurance for their starting rotation.
The Astros and Nationals share a spring training facility, so it was only natural that they would open Grapefruit League play together. The Astros were the home team. Here’s the lineup they rolled out.
Teams typically include at least a few regulars in their spring training lineups as a courtesy to the fans, who are spending money to see big league players play baseball. This is especially the case for home games. However, the Astros have decided to roll out a lineup with a combined 323 MLB plate appearances.
There might be a reason for that. Houston was lustily booed as they took the field. This was after running a video on the scoreboard celebrating their 2019 AL championship.
That’s all with the team that beat them in the World Series (and is widely regarded as baseball’s current heroes for beating the big bad cheating Astros) in the other dugout, of course. Nationals starter Max Scherzer has not thrown at any Houston player, and the game is now in a rain delay. But it seems like the Astros decided to spare their players from some possible rough treatment, both from fans and opposing pitchers.
The same could not be said for Astros mascot Orbit, who was also booed.
One can quibble with the merits of booing a bunch of players who have barely touched the big leagues because you’re mad at Jose Altuve and Alex Bregman, but sports fandom is something of an irrational business. Fans are going to want their pound of flesh, especially when they paid for the right to be in the ballpark and give the Astros a piece of their mind. Some of them even brought props! This is just how it all works, unfortunately. If you’re in an Astros uniform, you’re probably going to get booed.
Welcome to the 2020 season, Astros. It’s probably going to be like this all year.