A man claiming to be a former player for the Atlanta Braves named John Sullivan crashed the Atlanta Braves Alumni Weekend and got a free flight, room and board, and an appearance in the softball game out of it.
Of course, a quick check of baseball-reference shows that while there have been six men named John Sullivan to play in the majors, none of them have played since 1968. The last one to play for the Braves organization played for Boston back in 1921 and died 46 years ago. This “John Sullivan” apparently got the invite intended for former bullpen coach John Sullivan, who was with the team in the early 80′s.
He wasn’t a particularly good imposter, not knowing the Braves minor league affiliates, not knowing exactly when he played with the organization when asked (“1986 or 1987, I’m not sure”), and not being very good at baseball. The former players provided some funny quotes as they were all dubious but he kind of slipped through the cracks as no one was sure who he was.
- former reliever Craig Skok, “He was very much out of shape.”
- former starting pitcher Andy Ashby, “Dude, you’ve really gone downhill fast.”
- former reliever Jose Alvarez, “”We figured he must’ve had some health problems,” and his bat speed was “no more than 30 mph.”
He would have gotten away with it if it wasn’t for those pesky former players. Several of them finally confronted him while out drinking on Saturday night. Bobby Cox also knew he was an imposter after he asked who the guy was, and was told he was John Sullivan, who Cox remembered.