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The Import That Never Showed: Xavier Paul Signed To The Bandits Without His Knowledge
- Updated: November 26, 2011
Determination and deception go hand in hand for some, willing to do anything to play in the Australian Baseball League. An intricate web of lies has been exposed, derailing a plan that was executed over the best part of a year. The result shed two MLB players off the 2011/2012 ABL season, leaving fans and organizers shocked.
Breland Brown, a minor league player who was released by the Diamondbacks in August, is allegedly behind the scam. Brown posed as an agent, endeavoring to secure himself a position on the Sydney Blue Sox roster. To cement the agreement, Brown promised Pittsburg Pirate Xavier Paul to the Brisbane Bandits, in a package deal.
Only problem was, Xavier Paul knew nothing of this exchange and it appears, of Breland Brown himself.
In a bizarre conclusion to his scheme, Breland and his unwitting accomplice Paul failed to show up to their respective teams at the launch of the season, prompting a joint MLB and ABL investigation.
Although professional baseball in Australia is in its infancy, the Australian Baseball League is supported by the sport’s veterans and leaders. The Brisbane Bandits’ staff boast a wealth of industry expertise in
The only reason this swindle progressed so far, the ABL concludes, is that it was done well and by someone who knew the system. This involved the falsification of documents and impersonations of fictional identities.
The desperation of the accused to secure an ABL contract is a testament to the growth of baseball’s profile in Australia.
Touted as “the biggest scam to hit the ABL” and akin to a Hollywood movie script, it appears the Brisbane Bandits have already recovered from the loss of Paul. Having proved themselves already as an unyielding unit, Paul would have been a welcome addition but by no means, imperative to their future success.
UPDATE: Xavier Paul addressed the bizarre identity hoax telling MLB.com “It’s not that big of a deal to me. To see someone go that far, I guess, kind of made me laugh”, adding that he has no intention of taking legal action against the accused. “I would never go that far with something like this,” Paul said. “It doesn’t scar my image or anything, so to me it was pretty much something that I could laugh about.”
Major League Baseball’s Department of Investigations continues to examine the incident.