In case you've been spending all your time reading the soap opera that is the "Jim Bowden bonus-skimming" allegations, here is some actual news you can use regarding what's happening in Viera, FL.
The Nats released Odalis Perez this morning. Apparently the team has tried to contact him and his agent several times over the last couple of days and since yesterday was the mandatory reporting date and he was still a no-show, he basically forced the Nats' hand. So, Odalis gets what he wanted, a release from the $850K contract had he made the team. Bon chance, mon ami, finding employment.
Meathook took one off the left hand in BP yesterday. He was having X-rays taken today to see if anything was broken. For now, he's listed as day-to-day. But then again, aren't we all?
Daniel Cabrera becomes the latest player to turn his back on his country, deciding not to play for the Dominican Republic in the upcoming WBC. This comes just a couple of days after Roger Bernadina and Shairon Martis both withdrew their names for consideration as well.
RHP Jorge Sosa still is not in camp due to visa problems. MLB.com is reporting that manager Manny Acta has spoken with Sosa's agent and he should be in camp by Wednesday at the latest, according to the report. Sosa could be a very important piece of Acta's bullpen this season.
The big news around the Nats, however, still centers around GM Jim Bowden, and the bonus-skimming scandal that clouds his tenure. SI.com reported Sunday night that Bowden is now under investigation all the way back to 1994, when he was GM of the Cincinnati Reds. A scout, Jorge Oquendo, is alleged to be a link between Bowden and David Wilder, former Chicago White Sox Director of Player Personnel, who was dismissed for allegedly taking money earmarked for player signing bonuses. Oquendo worked under Bowden in 1994 and from 2000-2003 and for Wilder in Chicago.
When do the Nats say "enough" with regard to Bowden? His track record as a losing GM, coupled with the embarrassing and unprofessional (dreadlock wig, segway riding, firing players over talk radio) and downright illegal (drunk driving, FBI investigations for bonus-skimming) at some point has to trigger something with the Lerners that says, "Hey, maybe we should find someone else to guide this team."
I say, the sooner, the better. What do you say, Federal Baseball readers?