SAN FERNANDO, Calif. — Disgraced ex-New York Mets outfielder Lenny Dykstra on Monday was sentenced to three years in a California state prison after pleading no contest to grand theft auto and providing a false financial statement.
Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Cynthia Ulfig sentenced Dykstra after refusing to allow him to withdraw his plea and said the scam to lease high-end automobiles from dealerships by providing fraudulent information and claiming credit through a phony business showed sophistication and extensive planning.
“He obviously didn’t have the money to get the vehicles,” Ulfig said. “His conduct was indeed criminal.”
Dykstra, 49, has had a series of recent legal troubles and the prison sentence is part of a post-career downward spiral for the stocky slugger known as “Nails” that has included a stint at a sober living facility.
Dykstra initially pleaded not guilty to 25 counts after police arrested him and found cocaine, Ecstasy and synthetic human growth hormone at his Los Angeles home last April. He changed his plea in October to no contest and in exchange prosecutors dropped 21 counts.
RED SOX: Outfielder Carl Crawford will be shut down this week to let his left wrist heal and it’s unlikely he’ll be ready to play by opening day.
Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine said Monday that Crawford would held out for five to seven days because inflammation. Crawford had surgery on his wrist in mid-January.
Crawford had career lows with a .255 batting average and 18 stolen bases in 2011, the first season of his seven-year, $142 million with Boston.
ANGELS: Albert Pujols went 2 for 3 with a double and an RBI in his spring debut with Los Angeles.
PIRATES: Pittsburgh and outfielder Andrew McCutchen are closing in on a new contract that will keep the promising 25-year-old with the team through the 2017 season, with a club option for 2018.
The details are still being ironed out and McCutchen must pass a routine physical before it becomes official. A formal announcement is expected today.
TIGERS: AL MVP Justin Verlander picked up where he left off last season, pitching two scoreless innings in his spring training debut as Detroit beat Toronto 4-2.