Top Blue Jays IFA prospect's deal falls through due to birth date falsification

Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto Blue Jays / Tom Szczerbowski/GettyImages

Kennew Blanco, the No. 9 ranked International Free Agent for the 2024 class per MLB Pipeline, had his deal fall through with the Blue Jays due to birth date falsification according to Marcos Grunfeld. This news comes after an MLB investigation into identity alteration that has put "more than 50 IFAs back on the market". Many of these players are prospects for upcoming classes but Blanco seemingly isn't the only high profile name in this year's class that got caught. Raymel Ortiz's deal with the Mets also fell through due to age falsification.

It had been known for a few weeks that Blanco was not going to be signing with the Jays 2024 class as initially expected. Until now, there was little clarity on why that was. According to Grunfeld, Blanco is a year older than his listed birth date, meaning he's currently 17-years old rather than 16. Given the importance of age related projection, this is a sticking point for teams. The Blue Jays are still expected to reach an agreement with Blanco in next year's class but at a significant discount. Blanco has received praise for his polished offensive make-up, potential for growing into more power, and his strong defense at shortstop. All of that will be put on hold professionally until 2025.

Although this is new information to us, the Blue Jays have likely known already about it for months. They were forced to spread their money around and sign a deeper class than expected. Franklin Rojas, a catcher from Venezuela, received the top signing bonus. You can find a more complete view of the class here at Jays Journal. The Blanco news is disappointing for the team as well as the IFA system as a whole. It's not the first time the system has come under criticism for issues like this and it may become another point of contention in the push for changing it to a standardized draft.