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Pirates’ prospect Ji-Hwan Bae accused of domestic violence

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Pirates’ shortstop prospect Ji-Hwan Bae has been accused of domestic violence in his native South Korea. The allegations come from his former girlfriend and stretch back to the New Year’s Eve 2017. Bae has left extended spring training to return home at the request of investigators. A complaint has been filed with police, but no charges have been filed as yet. He remains eligible to participate in baseball activities, but MLB will likely investigate. The domestic violence rules applicable to non-roster players aren’t publicly available, but are probably similar to the rules applicable to players on the 40-man roster.

Originally signed by the Braves, Bae became a free agent due to misconduct by the team. The Pirates signed him for roughly $1.25M, making him the most expensive international amateur they’ve signed since Luis Heredia. He was expected to spend this season in the Gulf Coast League.

Needless to say, apart from any discipline that might be imposed, a criminal conviction likely would make it very difficult for Bae to secure a work visa.