DEC. 15: Assault charges against Familia were formally dropped today, reports ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin. According to Rubin, Fort Lee prosecutor Arthur Balsamo met with Familia’s wife prior to Thursday’s hearing and confirmed that she no longer wanted the case to be pursued.
As noted last month at the time of the report that charges could be dropped, however, this doesn’t preclude Familia from receiving some form of league-mandated suspension. Both Chapman received a 30-game suspension in the absence of either an arrest or charges being brought against him, while Reyes was suspended 52 games even though charges against him were dropped just before trial.
NOV. 18: The victim in the domestic violence case against Mets closer Jeurys Familia has asked that charges be dropped, reports Jim Baumbach of Newsday (Twitter link). Back on Nov. 1, news broke that Familia had been arrested and charged with simple assault in an alleged domestic violence incident.
Even in the event that the charges against Familia are dropped, which now seems a plausible outcome, the right-hander could still face punishment from the Commissioner’s office in the form of a suspension. Aroldis Chapman received a 30-game suspension earlier this season despite the fact that he was neither arrested nor charged in connection with domestic abuse allegations against him, and Familia’s own teammate, Jose Reyes (then with the Rockies), received a 52-game suspension even though the charges that had been brought against him were dropped shortly before the case went to trial.
If and when the criminal investigation into his actions is concluded, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred will undoubtedly look into the matter to determine the extent to which Familia will potentially be punished by the league. That determination, however, could take weeks or months depending on the level of information available. Notably, unlike suspensions for performance-enhancing drugs, domestic violence suspensions do not automatically preclude a player from participating in the offseason in a year during which they receive a ban.
Familia, who turned 27 last month, is arbitration-eligible for the second time this offseason and was projected by MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz to earn $8.7MM on the heels of a season in which he posted a 2.55 ERA with an NL-leading 51 saves, 9.7 K.9 and 3.6 BB/9 in 77 2/3 innings. He is obviously expected to play a significant role on the team again in 2017, though with Addison Reed on hand, it seems reasonable to think that the Mets will not necessarily prioritize the addition of another late-inning arm.