DEVELOPING: Atlanta Braves Hammered By MLB Over Signing Violations
((HT: The Atlanta Braves their own selves))
Here's the Braves response to the punishments handed down by Major League Baseball over their violations in signing foreign-born players...
The Braves were told that, because then-GM John Coppolella and scout Gordon Blakeley overpaid (or superceded) rules for retaining prospects. Because of their breaking of the rules, the Braves now lose 12 prospects- including Kevin Maitan- the top-ranked international prospect from 2016.
Coppolella has been "banned for life" by MLB for his actions- an action the HQ anticipates will be vigorously appealed especially if Cop has folks he can bring down with him as a part of a wider net.
In 2019-20, Atlanta will be restricted from spending more than $10,000 per player – and will be banned from signing Robert Puason, the 14-year-old shortstop from the Dominican Republic with whom the Braves had struck a deal deemed illegal because of his age. Come 2020-21, the Braves will lose half their signing-bonus pool, which is expected to be $4.75 million.
In addition, MLB will dock the Braves their third-round pick in the 2018 draft after the investigation found the organization had offered extra benefits to Drew Waters, the 41st overall pick in the 2017 draft, according to sources. He will remain with Atlanta.
The Braves "had" the top minor league system in all of MLB- not anymore... And John Hart, Coppolella, and Blakeley are only the beginning of the fallout.
Alex Anthopoulos may have regretted this new gig already...