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View Full Version : JimBo, Rijo under investigation



Benihana
07-11-2008, 09:44 PM
http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3483972

Joseph
07-11-2008, 10:08 PM
My my my my my.

Jimbo I can see, Jose is disappointing to see.

Strikes Out Looking
07-11-2008, 10:10 PM
Do they allow prisoners to weather leather pants? Just asking.

Unassisted
07-11-2008, 10:14 PM
Maybe this will provide some insight into why Rijo's academy is aligned with the Nationals rather than the Reds?

BCubb2003
07-11-2008, 11:46 PM
I wonder if this will lead to an international draft.

Crosley68
07-11-2008, 11:50 PM
Do they allow prisoners to weather leather pants? Just asking.

Leather pants and prison? That can't turn out well.

Chip R
07-12-2008, 12:13 AM
I blame Bob Boone. ;)

Hopefully the Reds hands are clean in this mess.

Virginia Beach Reds
07-12-2008, 12:13 AM
Jim Bowden is embarassing himself, his new team and his former team. How long will it be until the Nationals tell him to go fly a kite? I'm guessing about two more months, or so.

And seeing Rijo in Nationals gear, sickens me.

Cyclone792
07-12-2008, 12:15 AM
Hopefully Bowden takes a hard enough fall that Larkin decides to slide on out of Washington and stroll over to Joe Nuxhall Way.

OnBaseMachine
07-12-2008, 12:34 AM
Hopefully Bowden takes a hard enough fall that Larkin decides to slide on out of Washington and stroll over to Joe Nuxhall Way.

That would be nice. Barry belongs in Cincy.

Big Klu
07-12-2008, 01:09 AM
I hate to be the one to bring this up, but what if Larkin is involved, too?

VR
07-12-2008, 01:24 AM
Sheesh, besides legal advice....two other words for these boys. Slim.Fast.

jmcclain19
07-12-2008, 04:05 AM
I hate to be the one to bring this up, but what if Larkin is involved, too?

It'd be a bad, bad day to be a Reds fan. This ever blossoming scandal could keep widening folks.

I really don't think we've heard the end, or the most damaging of it yet.

Blitz Dorsey
07-12-2008, 06:16 PM
It'd be a bad, bad day to be a Reds fan. This ever blossoming scandal could keep widening folks.

I really don't think we've heard the end, or the most damaging of it yet.

Yeah, this is going to get good (or bad depending on your POV).

KronoRed
07-12-2008, 06:55 PM
If they are doing this in DC I find it hard to believe it wasn't going on when both were Reds employees

Chip R
07-12-2008, 11:15 PM
If they are doing this in DC I find it hard to believe it wasn't going on when both were Reds employees


The Reds didn't have much of a Dominican presence until a few years ago. But you never know.

Unassisted
07-13-2008, 12:38 AM
I wonder if this will cause a stir in Detroit and San Diego. According to the article in this thread (http://www.redszone.com/forums/showthread.php?t=54077), Rijo's academy has ties to those teams, too.

Or perhaps one of those teams tipped off MLB (or the FBI) about the skimming.

cincinnati chili
07-13-2008, 12:46 AM
Am I the only cynical person who wonders what kind of dirt Jim Bowden had on Stan Kasten to get his job in the first place and then to maintain it?

He's done a horrible job as GM, he had a shady legacy before this allegation, and now this.

What did the Nationals expect?

VR
07-13-2008, 12:56 AM
Am I the only cynical person who wonders what kind of dirt Jim Bowden had on Stan Kasten to get his job in the first place and then to maintain it?

He's done a horrible job as GM, he had a shady legacy before this allegation, and now this.

What did the Nationals expect?

I think you are overlooking his ability to acquire Christian Guzman as his #3 hitter.

REDREAD
07-14-2008, 12:21 AM
Innocent until proven guilty guys. Rijo has millions of dollars. I really doubt he's skimming 40k here and there.. I could believe that the scouts (and lower level people) would do it, but why Rijo? I'm guessing Rijo is being paid quite well. Bowden is also innocent until proven guilty as well.. I know a lot of people are hoping he's nailed, but let's face it. Bowden has made a lot of enemies in this game. It wouldn't be surprising for one to mention Bowden and Rijo's names to the press as an anonymous "Source"..

Not to mention, if Bowden was embezzling money, he'd probably be smart enough not to be caught. Maybe Bowden looked the other way when some of his guys didn't account for all their money, but I doubt he'd be taking the money himself..

Raisor
07-14-2008, 12:29 AM
Innocent until proven guilty guys.

In a court of law, not Redszone.

We. Are. The. Law.

KronoRed
07-14-2008, 12:52 AM
In a court of law, not Redszone.

We. Are. The. Law.

We aren't....but nobody argues with Sam The Eagle

OnBaseMachine
07-14-2008, 11:57 AM
Am I the only cynical person who wonders what kind of dirt Jim Bowden had on Stan Kasten to get his job in the first place and then to maintain it?

He's done a horrible job as GM, he had a shady legacy before this allegation, and now this.

What did the Nationals expect?

No kidding. Jim Bowden is an awful GM, maybe the worst in baseball now that Bavasi has been fired. If my team is moving from Montreal to D.C. and about to open a new ballpark, I'm finding me a great GM to get the team on the map soon. The Nationals instead did the opposite and hired one of the worst possible candidates available.

Team Clark
07-14-2008, 12:01 PM
No kidding. Jim Bowden is an awful GM, maybe the worst in baseball now that Bavasi has been fired. If my team is moving from Montreal to D.C. and about to open a new ballpark, I'm finding me a great GM to get the team on the map soon. The Nationals instead did the opposite and hired one of the worst possible candidates available.

I agree and I have to go along with the question of "What was Kasten thinking"? Stan Kasten worked with John Schuerholz for a long time and now works with Bowden. That is one end of the spectrum to the other in my book.

cumberlandreds
07-14-2008, 12:02 PM
No kidding. Jim Bowden is an awful GM, maybe the worst in baseball now that Bavasi has been fired. If my team is moving from Montreal to D.C. and about to open a new ballpark, I'm finding me a great GM to get the team on the map soon. The Nationals instead did the opposite and hired one of the worst possible candidates available.

This would be the best thing to happen to the Nationals if Bowden get forced out because of this. He's been terrible here in DC. My opinion of Kasten was lowered considerably when he retained Bowden after taking ownership of the Nats.

westofyou
07-14-2008, 12:23 PM
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/13/AR2008071301743.html


González Signing Probed

According to a report from SI.com, the FBI investigation into Latin American scouting practices, as it relates to the Nationals, will focus on the team's 2006 signing of shortstop Esmailyn González. The $1.4 million bonus Washington issued to the then 16-year-old has drawn attention, SI.com reported, citing sources close to the investigation, because the total doubled the amount offered by the next-highest bidder.

Federal investigators have interviewed General Manager Jim Bowden and plan to interview front-office assistant José Rijo as part of the league-wide inquiry examining, in part, the skimming of signing bonuses. Both Bowden and Rijo have repeatedly denied any wrongdoing

and then this:


This year, with just more than a month until the Aug. 15 deadline for signing first-round picks, the Nationals have been unable to sign any of their top five draft choices. And that's partly because the team has yet to indicate a similar willingness to again award its draftees with money beyond the industry standard. Calling the bonus demands of several top-five picks "ridiculous," Nationals principal owner Mark Lerner said yesterday that meeting those demands would form deficiencies elsewhere.

"You have to look at the global thing," Lerner said. "This is the budget for signing these guys, and you if sign them for this much, you won't be able to sign somebody else down the ladder."


In June, the Nationals signed picks Nos. 6 through 10. All earlier picks, though -- including first-rounder Aaron Crow, a pitcher from the University of Missouri, and second-round outfielder Destin Hood, a high-schooler from Mobile, Ala. -- are still unsigned. According to one source, Hood, selected 55th overall, is seeking money comparable with somebody chosen in the first round. If Hood is not signed, he will enroll at the University of Alabama, where he has been offered a football scholarship.

"We're just working out numbers right now, trying to make a decision, trying to play all of our options," Hood said.

Last year, the Nationals signed each of their top 20 choices -- just one of two teams with such a success rate. But even the most uniquely handled selection, McGeary, didn't come to an agreement until less than 30 minutes before the deadline.

"Jim and the guys are negotiating, and a lot of them will be right up to the deadline, Aug. 14, Aug. 15 -- they might be midnight signings," Lerner said.

REDREAD
07-14-2008, 12:51 PM
No kidding. Jim Bowden is an awful GM, maybe the worst in baseball now that Bavasi has been fired. If my team is moving from Montreal to D.C. and about to open a new ballpark, I'm finding me a great GM to get the team on the map soon. The Nationals instead did the opposite and hired one of the worst possible candidates available.

I'm not so sure the Nationals ownership wants to win.. The quote posted by WOY below makes them seem very Lindner-like.

Looks a lot like the rebuilding plan we were sold here for 2003. We also signed one high profile Latin player to kind of show the fans we were serious aobut building the farm and then the spending slowed down. That administration also didn't spend on the draft, claiming it's bad for the industry to spend above slot money, etc.

Anyhow, if the Nats ownership is like Lindner, than Bowden is a good of a GM as any. He can usaully piece together an offense and bullpen.. it's not as if the team is going to win, regardless of who is in charge.

OnBaseMachine
07-14-2008, 12:55 PM
I'm not so sure the Nationals ownership wants to win.. The quote posted by WOY below makes them seem very Lindner-like.

Looks a lot like the rebuilding plan we were sold here for 2003. We also signed one high profile Latin player to kind of show the fans we were serious aobut building the farm and then the spending slowed down. That administration also didn't spend on the draft, claiming it's bad for the industry to spend above slot money, etc.

Anyhow, if the Nats ownership is like Lindner, than Bowden is a good of a GM as any. He can usaully piece together an offense and bullpen.. it's not as if the team is going to win, regardless of who is in charge.

How can you keep defending Bowden? He's clearly an awful GM and not the best person in the world either. Btw his offense is the second worst in baseball.

OnBaseMachine
07-14-2008, 12:59 PM
BTW IIRC the Nationals were among the biggest spenders in the 2007 draft and International signing period so calling them cheap or not wanting to win is not correct.

redsmetz
07-14-2008, 03:36 PM
Ever since this story first broke (and not specifically about the Nationals), I've wondered how this would all play out. I've long wondered if the current buscones system wasn't fraught with peril, as they say. It just seems like a system that can easily be corrupted. Perhaps this can be an impetus to come to some better situation for international signings, leveling the playing field for everyone involved - teams, players, etc.

Big Klu
07-14-2008, 03:48 PM
I think the days of an international draft are coming, and it's events like this that will get things in motion. The and NHL and NBA do it--so can MLB.

Chip R
07-14-2008, 04:01 PM
I think the days on an international draft are coming, and it's events like this that will get things in motion. The and NHL and NBA do it--so can MLB.


The situations are a little different since the good foreign players in those leagues are well known and it's a bit more of a crapshoot for baseball players. But I do agree there should be an international draft. Now integrating it with the current amateur draft is another question.

westofyou
07-14-2008, 04:09 PM
The situations are a little different since the good foreign players in those leagues are well known and it's a bit more of a crapshoot for baseball players. But I do agree there should be an international draft. Now integrating it with the current amateur draft is another question.

The NHL international draft is of youngsters, not well known players, it's the place where the Red Wings clean up.

Big Klu
07-14-2008, 04:27 PM
The situations are a little different since the good foreign players in those leagues are well known and it's a bit more of a crapshoot for baseball players. But I do agree there should be an international draft. Now integrating it with the current amateur draft is another question.


The NHL international draft is of youngsters, not well known players, it's the place where the Red Wings clean up.

Then major-league clubs will have to expand their scouting in Latin America, East Asia, Australia, and even Europe. I know it's a different sport, but like WOY mentioned, the Red Wings do very well drafting international players who are young and unknown. I'm sure they have scouts in Eastern Europe--the Czech Republic, Russia, the Ukraine--looking at these players.

cincinnati chili
07-14-2008, 05:54 PM
The NHL international draft is of youngsters, not well known players, it's the place where the Red Wings clean up.

But don't hockey clubs draft the "young" players out of the junior hockey leagues in Canada? Those leagues are heavily organized and scouted. As I'm sure you know, many Canadians follow and care about junior hockey a helluva lot more than the NHL or NCAA hockey.

By contrast, if MLB is going to be allowed to draft 16 year olds from the rural Dominican - most of whom are in quasi-organized or non-organized leagues - then MLB's worldwide draft will involve a lot more tea-leaf reading than NHL/NBA.

I have mixed feelings about a worldwide draft. As a fan I favor it. As a neutral observer, I don't know. More important to me is that MLB clubs become forced to comport with minimum-wage laws for rookie-level teams. Based on a 60-hour work week (which is honestly, the club's expectation for players whom they consider "prospects"), non "bonus-baby" players are paid illegally low salaries. These players are disproportionately Venezuelan/Dominican (a much higher percentage than you see in the majors), and it's classic exploitation.

top6
07-14-2008, 05:58 PM
How can you keep defending Bowden? He's clearly an awful GM and not the best person in the world either. Btw his offense is the second worst in baseball.

I think some people defend him because, no matter how much people do not want this to be true, the Reds were better when he was GM than they have been since.

Also, FYI, the Nationals have finished with a better record than the Reds two of the three years he was GM there - even though their farm system was emptied out by Omar "Genius" Minaya in 2004 before he left for greener pastures.

So I think people calling him "the worst GM" are wrong. And if they are right, it's only because the Reds have had to fire their last 2 GMs.

Of course, I have no way of knowing if he is guilty of these accusations or, frankly, even what the accusations are (from the articles). We'll have to wait and see.

OnBaseMachine
07-14-2008, 06:13 PM
Everywhere Bowden goes his starting rotations are usually junk. He's never been able to develop starting pitching. Color me unimpressed with his resume.

westofyou
07-14-2008, 06:23 PM
But don't hockey clubs draft the "young" players out of the junior hockey leagues in Canada? Those leagues are heavily organized and scouted. As I'm sure you know, many Canadians follow and care about junior hockey a helluva lot more than the NHL or NCAA hockey.


Yes, but they also have an international draft of young players too... and they have to go up against Swedish leagues and Russian leagues (not tp mention al the other smaller Europe leagues)

PDX has a Junior club, they have a bigger following and history then most of the teams that vie for the Kelly Cup, so yes Junior and college hockey feed the NHL with a draft, but the untapped market as of late has been the Nordic area.

REDREAD
07-14-2008, 06:33 PM
How can you keep defending Bowden? He's clearly an awful GM and not the best person in the world either. Btw his offense is the second worst in baseball.

If it was Wayne K getting accused, I'd say the same thing.

I said the same thing when Bonds was first accused of taking steriods. I guess I'm just gullible and don't automatically assume someone is guilty based on some reporter that wants a big headline.

Yes, Washington stinks this year. I meant when you look at his entire career, he's generally good at building an offense and bullpen with little money and resources. He's good at picking up a Todd Walker or Ron Gant when no one else wants him. Doesn't always work, of course.

It doesn't appear as if the Nationals ownership has any desire to build a winner. Much like the 2003 Reds, ownership did squat to try to improve the team when the new park was built. It's a shame for fans of that area, because that is a potentially huge market and under the right leadership, that team could be a powerhouse. But it's always easier to just milk the baseball revenue sharing system and field a horrible team if all ownership cares about is the bottom line.

It makes one appreciate an owner like Cast even more.

Hooligan
07-14-2008, 06:36 PM
Do they allow prisoners to weather leather pants? Just asking.

Yes, but there called chaps!

REDREAD
07-14-2008, 06:37 PM
BTW IIRC the Nationals were among the biggest spenders in the 2007 draft and International signing period so calling them cheap or not wanting to win is not correct.

But this year, apparently they won't budge over slot for picks 1-5...

The Reds had a one year big spending spree on international talent too. They signed that Pena Dominican free agent, I think that was the same year they drafted Howington and gave him a huge bonus. (I think they shelled out big money the year before on KEarns/Dunn as well) They made a big deal over signing that Japaneese kid and the big show about how they were going to turn the farm around. A couple years later, they punt Sowers and have no money to sign Esponsia + Sardinha.. not to mention all the signablity picks they made. Allen decided the farm system was a waste. The Howington thing really soured him (he was quoted as such), and funds were cut.

Obviously, I don't follow Washington, so I don't know what's happening there. Don't really care much either, but that's a pretty big red flag when they claim they might not sign their top 5 draft picks because they refuse to budge off slot money..

westofyou
07-14-2008, 06:48 PM
It's a shame for fans of that area, because that is a potentially huge market

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/08/AR2008070803278.html


Of all the stunning and unexpected sports statistics that we will ever see, few take the breath away more quickly than the assertion on Monday, in Nielsen Media Research data published by SportsBusiness Journal, that only 9,000 household TV sets, out of a metropolitan area of 5.5 million people, are tuned to the average Nationals game.

"Nine thousand?" said an incredulous Manny Acta, eyebrows arched. "Is that possible?"

That's the universal reaction. From the Nats up to Commissioner Bud Selig, that raw number, a minuscule 0.39 average rating

cincinnati chili
07-14-2008, 07:08 PM
Washington D.C. like Montreal is a big market with some great sports fans.

Winning a little bit and not putting a bad taste in the community's mouth go a long way in reversing those numbers.

REDREAD
07-15-2008, 01:12 PM
Washington D.C. like Montreal is a big market with some great sports fans.

Winning a little bit and not putting a bad taste in the community's mouth go a long way in reversing those numbers.

Yep, Washington and Montreal didn't have the benefit of team history like the Reds have had. We have fans left over from the BRM era and their children.
We have fans that were dressed up in Reds gear from infancy.

Milwaukee has had a huge attendence increase this year (according to a radio interview with Melvin, their GM). Hopefully the Reds can get winning and win some new fans over as well.

But Washington is a sleeping giant, imo. If it ever gets its act together and starts winning, there's a lot of money in that area..

OnBaseMachine
08-05-2008, 02:18 AM
Yankees prospects may have been forced to kick back bonus money

By T.J. Quinn and Mark Fainaru-Wada
ESPN.com

Updated: August 4, 2008, 7:26 PM ET

Major League Baseball investigators are looking into accusations that several New York Yankees prospects from the Dominican Republic were forced to kick back portions of their signing bonuses to one or more team employees, several sources told ESPN.

The revelation is one of several developments in an ongoing investigation of a financial scandal involving the signing of players from the Dominican Republic. Last week, the Red Sox's Dominican scouting supervisor, Pablo Lantigua, was fired after MLB investigators confronted him about allegedly skimming signing bonuses, according to an MLB source.

Sources also told ESPN that the investigation is expected to implicate roughly 20 people on "a handful" of teams before it is complete. Investigators also have expanded their probe into Venezuela, where many major league clubs have player academies. "Things are coming to a head," one source familiar with MLB's investigation said.

Four MLB investigators returned to the United States from the Dominican last week and are preparing a report for the commissioner's office. While clubs have fired several officials already implicated in the scandal, MLB has worked closely with the FBI, which is conducting its own investigation into the alleged skimming of bonuses.

One source briefed on MLB investigators' findings said he believed "less than a half-dozen" teams would be implicated, including the Yankees, Red Sox, Nationals and White Sox.

The 20 or so employees, based in both the United States and the Dominican Republic, either received money or were aware of others who did, the source said.

Sources said FBI agents have not traveled to the Dominican, and contrary to media reports, have limited their probe thus far to allegations surrounding fired White Sox official David Wilder, Washington Nationals general manager Jim Bowden and Nationals special assistant Jose Rijo.

Wilder has not commented and did not return several phone calls. Bowden previously confirmed to ESPN that he had spoken with federal authorities but insisted he has done nothing wrong, and that FBI agents had asked him nothing about his own activities. Yankees general manager Brian Cashman declined to comment. Officials with Major League Baseball and the Red Sox on Monday did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

The accusations against the Yankees surfaced more than a month ago, sources said, but were augmented by an anonymous letter sent to the club shortly after investigators began looking into the charges. The letter listed the names of several prospects and the amount of money allegedly skimmed from their signing bonuses.

Two sources familiar with the letter's contents said Yankees officials turned it over to MLB investigators and have cooperated.

One of the players named in the letter was well-regarded prospect Kelvin DeLeon, a 17-year-old outfielder who signed for $1.1 million last year. He is currently playing for the Yankees' Dominican League club.

Investigators are looking at the involvement of Yankees scouting official Carlos Rios, sources said.

The scandal began to break in March when Wilder, then the scouting director for the White Sox, was stopped in Miami by U.S. Customs officials while trying to bring about $40,000 in cash back from the Dominican Republic. Sources said Wilder, who has not been criminally charged, has been cooperating with the FBI. He and two scouts were fired by the White Sox in May.

Wilder and others have been accused of inflating the value of some Dominican prospects, then demanding a kickback from the players' families once the players were signed. Critics have long complained that street agents known as "buscones" had been taking large cuts of players' bonuses as fees, but the news that scouts and other officials employed by the clubs were taking money has jolted the island.

"The families went along with it because they were still getting the money," one source said. "[The scouts] were really stealing money from the clubs."

http://sports.espn.go.com/mlb/news/story?id=3519111

Unassisted
08-23-2008, 12:37 AM
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/writers/jon_heyman/08/22/heyman.bowden/


Nats GM in trouble, Rox on the block, pitchers who'll get paid

Embattled Nationals general manager Jim Bowden still appears to have the support of his bosses, who blame others for problems that have beset Bowden and the club in recent days, according to people who have spoken to the leadership of the last-place club.

Bowden's job status would figure to remain uncertain longterm under the current conditions, which include the team's worst-in-baseball 45-83 record. But for now, his bosses are backing him on key issues in conversations with other top baseball people. Those issues include both the failure to sign No. 1 draft choice Aaron Crow and reports that Bowden is being investigated in baseball's scout skimming scandal.

Nationals higherups are blaming the failed Crow negotiations squarely on Crow's advisers, the Hendricks brothers, according to people familiar with their thinking. Nationals people maintain that the Hendricks brothers failed to respond to the team's offers for the University of Missouri right-hander until three days before the deadline, and that when they finally did respond, the Hendrickses sent an outrageous $9 million, take-it-or-leave-it proposal.

Furthermore, Nationals people say the demand wasn't lowered until 11:44 p.m. on deadline day, 16 minutes before the deadline, and when they did, they were still seeking $4.4 million. And that they only lowered their request to a still-way-above-market $4 million at the buzzer. So to Bowden's bosses, Crow is a member of the independent Forth Worth Cats solely because of his agents' hardball tactics.

It's hard to know for sure who's to blame in the breakdown of the Crow negotiations, though it appears that the Hendricks were playing extreme hardball. Some Nationals people have told others they are embarrassed to have even offered Crow $3.3 million, which is about what the Orioles paid Brian Matusz, a much higher first-round pick. Nats people believe the Hendrickses were trying to steal a page out of the Scott Boras playbook. That's a fine playbook. But they appear to have overdone it. (Boras' first-round clients all signed, except Gerrit Cole, a high schooler who's said by sources to be from a wealthy family that didn't need the money and who followed his dad's sound advice to go to college.)

Meanwhile, key Nationals people are blaming the attention being given to Bowden in the scout skimming scandal on erroneous press reports. Bowden's bosses seem to be under the impression that baseball is talking to every team about the scout skimming scandal, not just the Nats and a handful of other teams, and that Bowden was only interviewed regarding a past employee.

Ultimately, the scout skimming situation could prove much more problematic for Bowden -- although MLB doesn't have the goods on Bowden and may well find nothing to tie him to the scandal. But people familiar with the investigation tell SI.com that Bowden is indeed under investigation, that it's "completely false'' that Bowden was only asked about previous employees and that the Nationals are one of "six-to-eight'' teams currently being looked at. And contrary to what top Nationals people seem to believe, the FBI and MLB investigators aren't taking a scattershot approach and are "going where the information takes them.''

The Nationals owners, the Lerners, are said by other owners to be "sweet people'' who appear to be showing remarkable faith in their general manager. And perhaps they should be credited for their loyalty. But from here, it may also be a case of bad taste. While they are showing confidence in Bowden, they'd be better served placing their faith in club president Stan Kasten, the accomplished baseball man who along with John Schuerholz built the Braves dynasty. Kasten came to the Lerners as an arranged marriage set up by MLB powers, including commissioner Bud Selig. But while Kasten had all the power of a president in Atlanta, he is said by people familiar with the situation to be frustrated by the need to have approval for just about any move he makes in Washington.

As for Bowden, a person is innocent until proven guilty, of course, and all Bowden is guilty of to this point is a string of baseball mistakes that appear to have left the Nationals years from contention, from the failure to sign the talented Crow to acquiring players of questionable character such as Elijah Dukes to locking up not one but two first basemen with chronic health issues (Nick Johnson is injury prone while Dmitri Young's diabetes is no small concern) to fielding a team with only one major-league average position player (third baseman Ryan Zimmerman).

Several competing GMs criticized the Nationals for trading productive reliever Jon Rauch in a market bereft of bullpen stars for second-base prospect Emilio Bonifacio, a speed and glove man who one scout said "will struggle with the breaking ball.'' But it's early, and Bonifacio is said by those who know him to be a "great kid.''

Nats people are downplaying the defection of Crow, saying that since their lost first-round pick will be replaced by a similar one next year, that's not such a big deal. However, any delay does hurt the team that has wisely emphasized their drafts and player development (they signed their first 20 picks last year, and went over slot on rounds two through five this year). As one competing executive said, "The Nationals need whatever they can get.''

But that is all nitpicky stuff compared to what MLB is investigating. Nothing's been proven yet, and it's still difficult to fathom that a baseball GM who makes a high six-figure salary could possibly be so foolish to embroil himself in this mess. It's quite possible that Bowden isn't involved or that nothing may ever be proven regarding Bowden. But make no mistake, no matter what Nationals people believe, baseball is looking into it.

vaticanplum
08-23-2008, 12:46 AM
I think you are overlooking his ability to acquire Christian Guzman as his #3 hitter.

I interrupt this very interesting thread to remind everyone of one of my favorite baseball quotes ever, from a Washington Post columnist:

"The 40-year-old virgin has a better on-base percentage than Christian Guzman."

Carry on.

MartyFan
08-23-2008, 01:42 AM
Maybe this will provide some insight into why Rijo's academy is aligned with the Nationals rather than the Reds?

Wondering if this has anything to do with why Special K was such a strong arm with the scouting department and why a few of them left?

MrCinatit
08-23-2008, 03:07 AM
If the Nationals top brass really is behind Bowden and are not saying that simply for him to save face, then that organization has much larger problems than JimBo.

Matt700wlw
08-23-2008, 03:15 AM
I think some people defend him because, no matter how much people do not want this to be true, the Reds were better when he was GM than they have been since.

Also, FYI, the Nationals have finished with a better record than the Reds two of the three years he was GM there - even though their farm system was emptied out by Omar "Genius" Minaya in 2004 before he left for greener pastures.

So I think people calling him "the worst GM" are wrong. And if they are right, it's only because the Reds have had to fire their last 2 GMs.

Of course, I have no way of knowing if he is guilty of these accusations or, frankly, even what the accusations are (from the articles). We'll have to wait and see.

The latest GMs of the Reds are still trying to fix the system he broke.....