The Ottawa Titans believe in second chances.
The Canadian independent league team is standing by its newest outfielder, disgraced former Yankees farmhand Jake Sanford. Sanford, a 2019 third-round pick, was cut by the Bronx Bombers amid allegations he stole equipment from teammates and scammed memorabilia-seeking fans.
The Nova Scotia native has since returned home to the Great White North and signed with the Titans, a Frontier League team.
“Jacob Sanford made us aware of the allegations against him and has already paid dearly for it,” the club said in a statement, according to The Ottawa Citizen.
“The Ottawa Titans Baseball Organization will supply him with all the necessary tools to ensure his path to being the player and person he wishes to be. The club, player and the league will have not further comment on these allegations.”
If the Titans really wanted to be transparent, they could have also added the obvious: How often does a team like theirs get to add a guy who was considered a decent-enough big-league prospect a few days ago on the cheap?
Anyway, it’s hard to imagine this will indeed be the final word on the matter. Even if there is no legal exposure for Sanford, eventually he will have to face additional scrutiny. Perhaps as soon as next week.
The Titans are coming to the area to play at the New York Boulders and Sussex County Miners. It’s hard to imagine Sanford will be able to duck reporters for the entirety of the road trip. And it’s not like the Boulders or Miners are going to turn media away to protect him. And if not then, the Titans have to go play at the New Jersey Jackals in a few weeks.
James Kratch can be reached at [email protected]