Pirates Quickly Distance Team Affiliation With Vazquez After Arrest
The Pirates yesterday took down "any sort of signage acknowledging" P Felipe Vazquez around PNC Park after he was arrested on charges of multiple child sex crimes, according to Jason Mackey of the PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE. The signage was removed "within hours of the news breaking" yesterday afternoon. Vazquez is currently on MLB's restricted list and is "being held in the Allegheny County jail" (PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE, 9/18). In Pittsburgh, Jerry DiPaola noted Vazquez’ locker in the Pirates clubhouse was "emptied of all his belongings." Pirates President Frank Coonelly, GM Neal Huntington and manager Clint Hurdle "met with the team four hours before" yesterday's game against the Mariners. Pirates P Chris Archer described the mood in the Pirates clubhouse as "a little somber" (TRIBLIVE.com, 9/17). Also in Pittsburgh, Dejan Kovacevic wrote the Vazquez situation "isn't the Pirates' fault." Kovacevic: "If anything, the Pirates handled this ... as adroitly as possible." The team's statement "sent a message that this wasn't just some other infraction." However, it is now solely Pirates Owner Bob Nutting's "mess to fix." This situation "isn't anyone's fault but Vazquez," but when combined with another disappointing season and the "dozen years of failed drafting and developing that created this dearth of talent in Pittsburgh and below ... it's embarrassing" (DKPITTSBURGHSPORTS.com, 9/17).
NEXT STEPS FOR VAZQUEZ: ESPN's Jeff Passan reported MLB is "not even opening an investigation up" on the charges against Vazquez at this point. The league is "leaving this in the hands of police, but potential discipline for Felipe Vazquez is in all likelihood going to depend on what continues to come out and how the story further progresses” (“SportsCenter,” ESPN, 9/17).