Wander Franco in May 2023. May 11, 2023; Bronx, New York, USA; Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Wander Franco (5) looks out from the dugout before a game against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

It seems almost a given that Wander Franco will never play Major League Baseball again.

But no one could have predicted how in only four months his reputation would plummet from “future MLB superstar” to despised punchline for NSFW jokes.

A Dominican Republic newspaper reported that authorities searched two homes Tuesday looking for the 22-year-old disgraced baseball player. The search stemmed from allegations of Franco having a relationship with a minor from Puerto Plata.

The Tampa Bay Rays placed their one-time rising star on the restricted list in August following allegations he had a relationship with an underage girl. After a report that he had been involved with a second minor, MLB placed him on administrative leave.

MLB is still investigating Franco’s situation, but one MLB insider, Héctor Gómez, said in August that investigators in the D.R. told him, “It will be very unlikely that Wander Franco will play in MLB again.”

Gómez reported Tuesday that new evidence “further implicates (Franco) in the accusations that have been made against him of alleged relationships with minors.”

Franco has not played since Aug. 12. He has denied the allegations via social media, but has not addressed them in public.

Now, news of the police launching a search for Franco is yet one more stunning step in the shortstop’s sad saga. Fans quickly reacted to Tuesday’s news.



About Arthur Weinstein

Arthur spends his free time traveling around the U.S. to sporting events, state and national parks, and in search of great restaurants off the beaten path.