According to Major League Baseball, the reports that Baltimore Orioles general manager Mike Elias is under investigation for pension fraud are completely false.
On Friday, there was a report in the New York Daily News that Baltimore Orioles general manager was under investigation for pension fraud. That investigation had been prompted by the Orioles designation of minor league pitching instructor Chris Holt as one of the coaches eligible for the pension plan, although he is technically not a coach.
Given that Holt is not considered a coach, the report further states that the matter is in the hands of the pension committee lawyers. A six person panel is said to be reviewing those charges to see if they can be substantiated, with the possibility that Elias could be charged with pension fraud if he knowingly included an ineligible person on the list.
These reports are being disputed by Major League Baseball. According to a league representative, any such reports are false, and the league is comfortable with the Orioles’ designations for the pension plan.
This is not the first time Elias has brushed against a potential rules violation. He had been a part of the Astros front office in 2017 during the AstroGate scandal before being hired for the Orioles vacant GM role. Elias had managed to escape punishment for the scandal, although he and Sig Mejdal, now the assistant GM in Baltimore, are thought to be the architects of the code.
Holt was another former Astros employee, brought along by Elias to serve as the minor league pitching coordinator. He was later promoted to have his work include the major league pitching staff as well, although he did not appear in uniform on game days.
It will be interesting to watch how this plays out. As it stands, MLB is not concerned about those designations, feeling that Elias and the Orioles did everything right. But that does not mean that that the pension committee lawyers will agree. The Orioles, and Elias, could be facing some trouble if they rule that Holt should not have been eligible.
Baltimore Orioles general manager Mike Elias is reportedly under investigation for pension fraud. While Major League Baseball says those reports are false, the matter still needs to play out.