MLB Power Rankings: The 16 Craziest Arrests in MLB History

Jeffrey BeckmannCorrespondent IAugust 23, 2011

MLB Power Rankings: The 16 Craziest Arrests in MLB History

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    Similar to all professional athletes, MLB players live under a microscope with the media keeping tabs on every aspect of their day-to-day lives. It comes with the fame, I suppose.

    I'd be the first to admit that, in some cases, a story gets blown so far out of proportion that what has become the reality couldn't be further from the truth. That's the price of being a celebrity these days.

    Yet, that doesn't mean they have to make it this easy.

    Here are The 16 Craziest Arrests in MLB History.

16. Deion Sanders

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    Not even "Neon" Deion Sanders has a squeaky clean record. As a 28-year-old in between stints with the San Francisco Giants and Cincinnati Reds back in 1996, Prime Time was arrested and charged with misdemeanor trespassing.

    You can tell how upset he was.

    It turns out that Sanders is an avid fisherman, and he ignored "no trespassing" and "no fishing" signs in hopes he'd be able to catch a big one.

    The lake was considered federal property, as it was owned by the Southwest Florida International Airport.

15. Shawn Chacon

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    Shawn Chacon spent eight seasons pitching in MLB and even made the All-Star team as a member of the Colorado Rockies in 2003.

    His career all but ended when he was released by the Houston Astros in 2009 after a confrontation with GM Ed Wade turned violent.

    Chacon was arrested on a felony warrant in Colorado late last year after writing bad checks and then later choosing not to pay back $50,000 in markers to Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas.

    Embarrassingly, the police showed up at a Colorado bowling alley to arrest Chacon.  

14. Mike Leake

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    We all know Mike Leake was arrested for shoplifting earlier this season, but that doesn't mean it's still not absolutely ridiculous.

    Finances are tight around the Leake house these days, as he struggles to make ends meet on a $425,000 salary in 2011 (not to mention the $2.3 million signing bonus he received in 2009). So much so that he decided to get a five-finger discount on $60 worth of clothes from Macy's.

    At least the Reds' pitcher hit the clearance rack, grabbing six shirts listed at $9.99 a piece.

13. Pete Rose

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    When Pete Rose titled his autobiography My Prison Without Bars, he knew from first-hand experience what it was actually like in the slammer.

    No, Rose didn't spend time in prison for betting on baseball; but not surprisingly, it did have something to do with gambling.

    In 1990, Rose pleaded guilty to two charges of tax evasion—stemming from money earned by selling autographs and memorabilia, along with horse racing winnings.

    Rose was sentenced to five months in a medium security prison, fined $50,000 and ordered to do 1,000 hours of community service.

    He also had to pay more than $366,000 in back taxes and interest.

12. Kenny Rogers

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    After a report was published saying that he would retire if the Rangers didn't give him a contract extension, Kenny Rogers made it clear he wouldn't be talking to the media during the 2005 season.

    Naturally, Rogers didn't take a liking to the two cameramen who were relentlessly trying to get video of him during pregame warm-ups that June.

    Rogers shoved both of the cameramen, knocking one to the ground. When the reporter quickly turned his camera back on to resume filming the tirade, Rogers once again shoved the reporter; this time, kicking the camera after it had been knocked to the ground.

    Rogers' outburst led to a 20-game suspension and two misdemeanor assault charges, while also earning him a spot on the Top 10 Attacks on Cameramen video featured above.

11. Dwight Gooden

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    The list goes on and on for Dwight Gooden.

    Doc has numerous DUI/DWI arrests, one time while having his five-year-old son in the car with him. He's also been busted for cocaine possession and a number of other drugs over the last decade.

    He once showed up to a meeting with his probation officer while intoxicated and coked up, while on another occasion, after refusing an officer's orders to step out of the vehicle, Gooden took off and was charged with fleeing police.

    To top it off, after his girlfriend threw a phone at his head, he decided to punch her repeatedly.

10. Carl Everett

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    "Jurassic Carl" is at it again.

    Carl Everett retired from MLB after the 2006 season, but it was only a matter of time before the outspoken slugger would find himself back in the news.

    This past April, the man who openly questioned the Apollo Moon Landing and made known his distaste for dinosaurs was arrested on charges of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and tampering with a witness.

    Everett reportedly held a handgun to the head of his wife of 18 years. This is not a joke, but she was actually wearing a Barney costume (yes, the purple dinosaur) at the time the incident took place.


9. Jim Leyritz

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    New York Yankees playoff hero Jim Leyritz was arrested in 2007 on charges of DUI and vehicular manslaughter after his car struck another vehicle, killing the driver.

    While his BAC after the crash registered at 0.14, the victim—who was returning home from her bartending job—had a BAC of 0.18.

    A Florida jury acquitted Leyritz on the DUI manslaughter charge late in 2010.

    Leyritz was also arrested in 2009 on a separate charge for battery against his former wife.

8. Byron McLaughlin

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    Byron McLaughlin spent most of his brief MLB career with the Seattle Mariners during the late-70s, but it turned out he was a better businessman than he was a baseball player.

    McLaughlin made deals with Korean businesspeople to make counterfeit shoes, including brand names such as Converse, Vans and Adidas.

    The Korean's would manufacture the shoes while McLaughlin used his ties in Mexico—from his playing days—to get them into the Mexican market.

    In any given month, McLaughlin was making 80,000 pairs of sneakers while sometimes bringing in over $750,000.

    After pleading guilty to money laundering charges, McLaughlin fled the country before being sentenced and hasn't been seen since.



7. Scott Olsen

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    When Scott Olsen went out to celebrate a big win over the Cincinnati Reds in 2007, the Florida Marlins' pitcher had no idea the night would end with him being tasered at gunpoint.

    After fleeing and eluding a police officer during a traffic stop, the intoxicated Olsen finally made it home with a slew of cops behind him.

    Unwilling to be arrested, Olsen decided that kicking the officers would make them go away. Of course, that's when the cops were forced to pull out the tasers and guns to subdue him.

    By the looks of it, Olsen was on the wrong end of the beating.

6. Denny McLain

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    Denny McLain went 31-6 for the Detroit Tigers in 1968 while leading his squad to a World Series title. He's also the last MLB pitcher to win 30 or more games in a season.

    McLain did it all, and unfortunately, his potential Hall of Fame career ended at 28 years old because of it.

    He was charged alongside mobsters Anthony Spilotro and John Gotti, Jr. with counts of drug trafficking, embezzlement and racketeering,

    An avid gambler, at one point, McLain even attempted to set up a bookmaking operation because he had been losing large amounts of money on bets.

5. Darryl Strawberry

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    Darryl Strawberry may just be the biggest waste of talent in MLB history. The longtime New York Met and Yankee star had his career ruined by substance abuse.

    While drugs make up a majority of his rap sheet, Strawberry was arrested in 1999 for soliciting sex from a policewoman posing as a prostitute. He had cocaine on him at the time.

    Then in 2000, Strawberry took a mouthful of painkillers before driving to see his probation officer.

    During the drive, Strawberry blacked-out, rear-ended another car and then tried to drive away.

    An off-duty cop witnessed the entire series of events and arrested him at gunpoint.

4. Ugueth Urbina

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    Within baseball circles, Ugueth Urbina is best remembered for being traded to the Florida Marlins from the Texas Rangers in 2003. The Rangers received Adrian Gonzalez and two other prospects in the deal.

    By 2005—two years after helping the Marlins win the World Series—Urbina was beginning a near 15-year sentence for attempted murder in his homeland of Venezuela.

    According to reports, Urbina attacked five farm workers on his property whom he thought had stolen a gun. Instead of calling the police, Urbina decided to attack the five men with a machete before pouring gasoline on them.

    It's a good thing he couldn't find a match.

3. Lenny Dystra

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    Lenny Dykstra has been arrested more times than Al Capone.

    Just recently, Nails was hit with 25 misdemeanor and felony counts of grand theft auto and possession of cocaine, ecstasy and human growth hormone.

    You can also add fraud, sexual assault and writing a bad check to a prostitute to his rap sheet.

    The craziest of his arrests happened back in 1991, when Dykstra crashed his Mercedes-Benz into a tree while leaving teammate John Kruk's bachelor party.

    He suffered broken ribs, a broken collarbone and a shattered facial bone while teammate Darren Daulton broke a facial bone, severely injuring his eye.

    Nails had a BAC of 0.179 at the time of the crash. 

2. Elijah Dukes

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    I would try to explain how Elijah Dukes was arrested for threatening the lives of his wife and their children in May of 2007, but instead I'll just let you read the transcript of his voicemail.

    "Hey, dawg. It's on, dawg. You dead, dawg. I ain't even bulls-------. Your kids too, dawg. It don't even matter to me who is in the car with you. Ni----, all I know is, ni----, when I see your motherf------ a-- riding, dawg, it's on. As a matter of fact, I'm coming to your motherf------ house."

    Two months later, Dukes was in trouble again after throwing a bottle of Gatorade at a 17-year-old girl who had confronted the player to inform him she was pregnant.


1. Matt Bush

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    The San Diego Padres had high hopes for Matt Bush when selecting him first overall during the 2004 MLB draft. They gave the high school shortstop a signing bonus of more than $3 million.

    Bush was suspended before he could ever take the field for the Padres due to a bar fight outside of an Arizona nightclub. It didn't end there.

    Bush hit rock bottom in July of 2009 when he was arrested once again. This time charged with reckless driving with alcohol, vandalism and resisting arrest. Apparently Bush was standing outside of his vehicle throwing objects at passing cars at 1:40 in the afternoon, obviously intoxicated. 

    He then got in his vehicle and proceeded to back into the cars around him before the police showed up. Then came the breakdown, as Bush was hogtied by police while crying wildly.