How Do You Solve the Fausto Carmona Problem?

If Latin American baseball players will swap families to disguise their ages, what can MLB do?
Fausto Carmona #55 of the Cleveland Indians Photograph by David Maxwell/Getty Images

Families in the Dominican Republic are now swapping identities in an effort to disguise the ages of Major League Baseball prospects, according to Baseball America’s Ben Badler. This latest passage in the game of birthday hide-and-seek between baseball and Latin American players comes in response to MLB’s having begun to test the DNA of some prospects to verify their identities, which was a response to players having started trading birth records and life stories with other men to shave a year or two off their ages. (That trick lead to some strange headlines as fans learned, for instance, that “Fausto Carmona is Not Fausto Carmona.”) If baseball teams want to see a DNA match between mother and son, the players have concluded, we’ll show them a match.

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