Juan Carlos Oviedo
|Juan Carlos Oviedo|
Oviedo, then known as Leo Núñez, in 2009.
|Tampa Bay Rays – No. 46|
March 15, 1982 |
Bonao, Dominican Republic
|Bats: Right||Throws: Right|
|May 9, 2005 for the Kansas City Royals|
(through 2011 season)
|Earned run average||4.34|
Juan Carlos Oviedo (born March 15, 1982[a]) is a Dominican professional baseball pitcher. He bats and throws right-handed. At age 17, he began using the name Leo Núñez, although his true identity was revealed in 2011.
Oviedo was born in Bonao in the Dominican Republic. At age 17, Oviedo assumed the identity of his 16-year old best friend, Leo Nunez, in order to receive a more lucrative contract. In 2011, Marlins reliever Edward Mujica, a close friend of Oviedo's, said that "[a]t 17 years old, you maybe lose $100,000 or $150,000 when you sign [compared to a 16-year-old with the same skills]. And if you're like 18, you might sign for $5,000 and maybe they give you an opportunity."
Núñez was originally signed by the Pittsburgh Pirates as an undrafted free agent on February 16, 2000. From 2001 to 2004, he was mainly used as a starting pitcher in the Pirates system. On December 16, 2004, he was traded to the Kansas City Royals for catcher Benito Santiago.
After being traded to the Royals, he was converted to a full-time relief pitcher. He began the 2005 season with the Single-A High Desert Mavericks. He was promoted to the Double-A Wichita Wranglers after posting a 9.00 ERA in eight games. He had his contract purchased by the big league club on May 9, 2005, and made his major league debut on the same day.
Along with teammates Ambiorix Burgos and Andrew Sisco, they were the first trio of rookie pitchers in major league history to throw at least 50.0 innings each without making a start. Núñez finished the 2005 season with a 3–2 record and a 7.55 ERA in 41 games.
In 2006, Núñez played for the Double-A Wranglers, Triple-A Omaha Royals, and at the major league level. He only played in seven major league games in 2006, with a 4.73 ERA.
In 2007, he was converted back into a starting pitcher.
On June 22, 2007, Núñez would have been traded to the Oakland Athletics for outfielder Milton Bradley. However according to the Royals report, Bradley was injured at the time, and the trade was voided.
After the 2008 season, Núñez was traded by the Royals to the Florida Marlins for first baseman Mike Jacobs. In 2009, Núñez became the Marlins closer after Matt Lindstrom was placed on the disabled list in late June. He finished the season with 26 saves.
On April 1, 2012, MLB announced that they would suspend Oviedo for six weeks after he is removed from the restricted list. Oviedo must get a visa to be removed. On May 28, Oviedo was suspended for 8 extra weeks for age and identity fraud. He would be eligible for one rehabilitation assignment in the minor leagues for a maximum of 16 days. He would be eligible to play for the Marlins in the Major League on July 23. During a triple-A rehab game on July 16, Oviedo sprained his right elbow's ulnar collateral ligament and was later placed on disabled list. On September 6 he underwent Tommy John surgery.
On January 22, 2013, Oviedo signed with the Tampa Bay Rays. He had his contract selected on 3/31/13 and then placed on the 60-day DL
On September 22, 2011, the Florida Marlins placed Núñez on the restricted list without listing a reason. The Associated Press reported that his real name was Juan Carlos Oviedo, that he was a year older than listed, and that he returned to the Dominican Republic to deal with the issue. Dominican Central Electoral Commission President Roberto Rosario said that Oviedo signed a sworn statement saying he used fake identification documents.
- Exact birth date is unclear due to name controversy. Some sources like MLB.com list March 15, 1982, while others list August 14, 1983.
- "DomRep official: Leo Nunez will not face charges". sportsillustrated.com (Sports Illustrated / CNN). September 27, 2011. Retrieved September 27, 2011.
- Fieser, Ezra; Robles, Frances (September 23, 2011). "Marlin formerly known as "Leo Núñez" faces jail time". The Miami Herald. Archived from the original on September 28, 2011.
- Hill, Jemele (September 28, 2011). "Blame the game for Leo Nunez's name". ESPN. Archived from the original on September 28, 2011.
- Kaegel, Dick. "Bradley-to-Royals deal voided", MLB.com, June 22, 2007. Accessed September 10, 2007.
- KC acquires power-hitting Jacobs
- Jackson, Barry (April 1, 2012). [miamiherald.typepad.com/sports-buzz/2012/03/suspension-set-for-marlins-oviedo-former-canes-greats-puzzled-by-dolphins.html "Suspension set for Marlins' Oviedo"] Check
|url=scheme (help). Miami Herald.
- Fernandez, Andre C. (2012-07-17). "Miami Marlins’ Juan Carlos Oviedo has sprained elbow". Miami Herald. Retrieved 2012-09-24.
- Frisaro, Joe (2012-08-29). "Ozzie wants Marlins to handle injuries differently". MLB. Retrieved 2012-09-24.
- Rojas, Enrique (2012-09-24). "Juan Carlos Oviedo has surgery". ESPN. Retrieved 2012-09-24.
- Wine, Steven. , Associated Press, September 22, 2011. Accessed September 22, 2011.
- "Leo Nunez might not be Marlin closer's real name". CBS News.
- "Official: Leo Nunez Admits Using Fake Documents". The New York Times. Associated Press. September 23, 2011. Archived from the original on September 28, 2011.