PITTSBURGH -- Xavier Paul said he will not pursue any legal action against the Minor League player who promised Paul's participation in the Australian Baseball League in order to secure a spot for himself.
In one of the more bizarre stories this offseason, Paul found himself recently caught up in an identity hoax that was allegedly orchestrated by Breland Brown, a 26-year-old outfielder who most recently played in Arizona's farm system. Multiple sources identified Brown as the perpetrator of the scheme, which involved Brown posing as an agent and creating fake documents in order to gain entry into the ABL.
As part of the hoax, Brown is said to have told the ABL that Paul would agree to play in Australia this offseason if Brown was also given a roster spot.
The ABL agreed to the offer and, until last week, was expecting Paul to play for the Brisbane Bandits. The hoax was quickly uncovered after the ABL contacted Paul to ask why he had not reported to Australia.
"I didn't know anything about it," said Paul, whose plans were always to spend the offseason at his home in Louisiana. "It's not that big of a deal to me. To see someone go that far, I guess, kind of made me laugh."
Major League Baseball's Department of Investigations is looking into the situation. Paul confirmed that he has no intention of taking legal action.
"I would never go that far with something like this," Paul said. "It doesn't scar my image or anything, so to me it was pretty much something that I could laugh about."
Interestingly, Paul and Brown both grew up in the same area of Louisiana and are less than three months apart in age. Asked if he knew Brown, Paul said only: "I know the name."
Brown, who was released by the D-backs in August, is not currently with another organization. He has also been removed from the ABL's Sydney Blue Sox roster.
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.