The Florida Marlins had placed closer Leo Nunez on the restricted list. Late Thursday, word got out why - Nunez was returning to the Dominican Republic amid suspicion that he was playing under an assumed name, with an assumed age. One source said that his actual name is Juan Carlos Oviedo, and that he's 29 years old, rather than the listed 28.
Friday, Nunez has given confirmation. Not of the second stuff, but of the first stuff. ESPN:
Florida Marlins closer Leo Nunez admitted Friday to using fake documents and a fake ID to sign a professional contract more than a year ago.
Central Electoral Commission President Roberto Rosario said at a press conference that Nunez signed a sworn statement saying he is not the person identified in official documents.
So we don't yet know for sure that Nunez, 28 is actually Oviedo, 29, but we do know for sure that Nunez, 28 is somebody else. And probably Oviedo, 29. That would be a weird thing for the source to lie about.
A man by the name of Hector Pena Diaz has been arrested for allegedly falsifying Nunez's documents, and while we don't know anything about Diaz himself, it stands to reason Nunez didn't do this on his own. It's a not uncommon practice for Dominican baseball players to lie to make themselves younger, thereby making themselves more appealing to American scouts. Nunez first signed with the Pittsburgh Pirates as an international free agent in 2000.
The likelihood is that this will all be resolved before too much time passes, and Nunez will return to Major League Baseball in 2012 under another name. But one can never predict what complications might arise.