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Volume 24 No. 218
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MLB Investigating Allegations That Twins' Miguel Sano Assaulted Photographer In '15

MLB is "investigating allegations by a woman who worked as a photographer" at Twins events who said that 3B Miguel Sano "sexually assaulted her" in '15, according to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com. Photographer Betsy Bissen in a tweet posted Thursday said that Sano "grabbed her wrist and tried to pull her inside a bathroom at a store in a mall after an autograph session" and that Sano "tried to kiss her several times." Sano issued a statement Thursday "denying the allegations." Sano's former agent Rob Plummer confirmed that he was at the mall for the signing but "was not in a position to see the alleged incident." Bissen in a follow-up to her initial tweet indicated that the Twins "knew nothing about the incident at the time." MLB and the MLBPA have an agreement "on a domestic violence, sexual assault and child abuse policy" that allows Commissioner Rob Manfred to "decide on appropriate discipline, with no minimum or maximum penalty" (ESPN.com, 12/28). In Minneapolis, Phil Miller in a front-page piece notes Sano is apparently the "first prominent active professional athlete to be accused of sexual misconduct" since the start of the #MeToo movement (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 12/29). YAHOO SPORTS' Jeff Passan writes MLB faces what almost "certainly will be a he-said, she-said case -- and while its short history of punishing those involved in domestic disputes is strong, the league hasn’t adjudicated an incident quite like this." The Sano case "could be a standard bearer for the league" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 12/29).