Although the Houston Astros are regarded as one of the top teams in MLB, the team’s future prospects are being damaged by old-fashioned dishonesty. Recently, the 2022 World Series champs were named as one of the clubs most affected by age fraud.

Per league rules, the minimum age a player needs to be to seek an MLB contract is 16. However, despite this rule being in place for some times, teams regularly commit to 12, 13 or 14-year olds who claim to be sixteen, without providing any sort of proof. Recently, Jeff Passan and Evan Drellich co-authored a piece in The Athletic which claims that age fraud was wide-spread from players of Dominican origin signed during the ongoing international free agency period.

“The Astros, multiple executives around the sport said, appeared to get hit the hardest, losing three players” – Chandler Rome

Several teams, including the Houston Astros, have had international free agent signings revoked because the league has had reasonable grounds to doubt the ages of the signings. Other teams who were apparently affected by age fraud include the Kansas City Royals, New York Mets, Oakland A’s, and Minnesota Twins.

The international free agency signing period opened on January 15. As such, many young stars have the chance to lock down the dream of their lifetimes with an MLB team. However, less than two weeks later, several of these names have been called back. Astros GM Dana Brown declined to offer any sort of comment on the matter.

“Age fraud on the rise in Dominican Republic, sowing chaos for MLB teams, young players. With @JeffPassan” – Evan Drellich

Age fraud of all kinds is nothing new to baseball. Miguel Tejada, who won the 2002 MVP Award as a member of the Oakland Athletics, lied about his age. Tejada claimed he was two years younger than he was by two years in order to secure an MLB contract. Although modern prospects appear to claim they are older than they are, the same breach in principle remains.

Houston Astros are far from the only team to suffer from the dishonesty epidemic

Although the Astros still have plenty of skill on their roster, the future is coming fast. With their core group of Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, and Yordan Alvarez growing older by the day, the team will soon need to look to the future.

However, if age-fraud continues at this rate, the future of all teams, not just the Houston Astros, could be tossed into question.



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