ESPN is reporting that Jim Bowden resigned Sunday after four seasons as the Washington Nationals general manager, leaving under the cloud of a federal investigation into the skimming of signing bonuses given to Latin American prospects.
He has maintained his innocence in the matter, but said Sunday, “I’ve become a distraction.”
“It’s an emotional decision. It saddens me. But I feel it’s in the best interest of two of the things I love the most, and that’s the Washington Nationals and baseball,” Bowden added.
Seated at a table with Nationals president Stan Kasten before a small contingent of reporters and team officials, Bowden read from a prepared statement, sometimes deviating from the script as he struggled to contain his emotions.
“My resignation is based upon my realization that my ability to properly represent the Washington Nationals has been compromised because of false allegations contained in the press,” Bowden said in a statement. “I am disappointed by the media reports regarding investigations into any of my professional activities. There have been no charges made, and there has been no indication that parties have found any wrongdoing on my part.
“At the same time, while I have done nothing wrong, I place a greater value on the love, respect and best interests of my family, friends, the game of baseball — that I’ve served lovingly and faithfully for close to 25 years — and, the reputation and future of the Washington Nationals, which I’m proud to have been a part of since its inception in 2004.”
No replacement was immediately announced.