In a recent Washington Post report, investigative journalist Gus Garcia-Roberts revealed that former Dodgers outfielder Yasiel Puig faced two separate sexual assault allegations back during the 2017 season. Then he was still a Dodger and hit a career-high 28 home runs that year. According to the report, MLB knew of the allegations but did not place the former All-Star on administrative leave since the details were never made public.
Here’s part of the WaPo report.
Major League Baseball learned of the allegations during the 2017 season, according to people with direct knowledge of the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss it publicly.
As Sports Illustrated writer Joseph Salvador noted, if an allegation is made privately, MLB will not immediately put the player on leave, because that would make the allegations public. Dodgers Nation will not recount the descriptions of the assaults, but according to documentation, the separate incidents happened in January of 2017.
Puig denied the allegations but reportedly was “strongly advised” to settle with the individuals by his attorney at the time, Scott Lesowitz.
“Yasiel’s advisers at the time strongly advised him to enter into the agreements despite Yasiel denying the allegations,” Lesowitz wrote in a statement to The Post. With “limited English abilities,” Lesowitz wrote, Puig “deferred to his advisers.” Lesowitz did not address the allegations in detail.
Altogether, Puig paid out $325,000 in settlements to both women. The outfielder also recently settled another assault allegation from an encounter with a woman at a Lakers game in 2018.
Dodgers president, Stan Kasten, denied having any knowledge of the situation. He stated to the Washington Post, “I have no recollection of that at all,” declining to answer any further questions and further pointing a spotlight on the club’s negligence in how it deals with troubled players.
Puig has been out of Major League Baseball since the conclusion of the 2019 season. He recently signed a deal to continue his career in Korea, just days before this report dropped.