Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Wander Franco is the subject of an investigation being conducted by the Dominican Republic's National Agency for Boys, Girls, Adolescents and Family and Gender Violence Unit, the Associated Press reported on Wednesday.
Judge Olga Dina Llaverias, who specializes in child abuse cases, is heading the probe, per the report. A prosecutor in the Dominican Republic told AP it's a "delicate topic because there is a minor involved."
Social media posts over the weekend alleged that Franco, 22, was involved in a relationship with a younger woman. He denied the assertion in an Instagram Live post on Sunday, but he subsequently deleted the video.
Major League Baseball announced an investigation into the situation, and on Monday the Rays placed Franco on the restricted list, removing him from the active roster. He is still being paid by the team while the investigations proceed, per multiple media reports.
Franco is in the second year of an 11-year, $182 million contract he received from the Rays after the 2021 season. That year, he finished third in American League Rookie of the Year voting despite playing in just 70 regular-season games.
He made the AL All-Star team for the first time this year. This season, he has a .281 batting average, a .344 on-base percentage, a .475 slugging percentage, 17 homers, 58 RBIs and 30 stolen bases in 112 games.
Over his three-year career, he has a .282/.340/.454 batting line with 30 homers, 130 RBIs and 40 steals in 265 games.
—Field Level Media