Valentine’s Day seemed like a perfectly appropriate day to post about Elijah “You Dead Dawg” Dukes, who has recently taken up rapping and naturally going by a new name of “Fly Eli.” He’ll soon release an album and his first live show was last week at the Palladium in Tampa. In recent interviews, in addition to discussing his budding new career, he’s talked of how police are out to get him and that he was “thrown under the bus” by Major League Baseball. Of course he was.
“Dukes – who played for the Tampa Bay Rays and Washington Nationals – says he was blackballed by baseball after he came forward last year with allegations that fellow ball players were smuggling drugs onto chartered aircraft, using drugs in hotel rooms after flights and how he would sometimes smoke marijuana before home games when he played for the Washington Nationals. ‘That is why I ain’t got no job right now,’ says Dukes … The players, he says, would often smuggle the drugs in ‘their little man purses. I never did but but most of the guys carried their man purses, you know, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, you know.’”
An interesting stance to say the least considering that at the time he was released by the Nationals (before the start of last season), Dukes simply stated, “That’s part of baseball. No big deal, no hard feelings.” The idea that fellow teammates regularly smuggled drugs from city to city sounds a bit much especially since, for a pro athlete, an abundance of party favors are more times than not an effortless phone call away regardless of location, though points are certainly in order for the use of “man purse.” And despite his claim that Major League Baseball was informed of all of this, Rob Manfred, MLB’s senior VP for labor relations and human resources says Dukes never informed the league of anything. To no surprise, the Rays and Nationals declined comment.
So all we’re left with here is Fly Eli and a bunch of wild accusations that supposedly led to him being without an MLB contract. Worst of all, there has been no release date given for his album.
Former Ray Dukes opens up about baseball, drugs, new rap career [TBO.com]