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New York Yankees cut former prospect, Jake Sanford, for allegedly stealing from teammates

Matt Johnson
New York Yankees, Jake Sanford
Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

As the New York Yankees sit atop the MLB power rankings thanks to one of the best starts in baseball history, things aren’t as good in the farm system. Jake Sanford, one of the team’s prospects, was released after allegedly stealing from teammates and scamming fans.

The 24-year-old’s baseball career got off to a promising start. A third-round pick in the 2019 MLB Draft, Sanford slowly worked his way up the farm system. After struggling in 2019 and then being sidelined for the 2020 season due to COVID-19 shutting down the minors, he showed improvement in 2021.

Sanford slashed .291/.370/.438 at New York’s A-affiliate the Tampa Tarpons. He earned a spot with High-A Hudson Valley, posting a .839 OPS thanks to a .278/.342/.497 slash in 49 games.

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While he was on the older side for players at that level, the improvement showed glimpses of further potential. For a young athlete who made the transition from college volleyball to pro baseball, it was a great story.

All of it came to an end this month. As first reported by Brendan Kuty of NJ Advanced Media, Sanford was cut following an investigation into allegations that he stole from teammates and scammed fans out of money.

According to the investigation’s findings, per the NY Post, the team found that Sanford constantly harassed teammates to try and get some of their gear and he eventually stole some of it. He would then sell the equipment online. The young outfielder also allegedly took money from online buyers for products he never provided to them after receiving the money.

A source told the NY Post that the belief is the issue could be tied to gambling debts. However, the Yankees would not provide any comment on the release or investigation. Following his release, Sanford joined the Frontier League by agreeing to a contract with the Ottawa Titans.

Already facing long odds of ever reaching the majors, Sanford’s career in the minor leagues is likely over.