Adam LaRoche, the 15 season MLB veteran first baseman and slugger, made the headlines earlier this spring when he unexpectedly announced his retirement following a request from White Sox management to minimize the amount of time his 14-year-old son, Drake, spent in the clubhouse and on the field. LaRoche surprised us again when it was reported that the ball player spent 10 days during the off-season leading up to that retirement announcement “doing undercover work to help rescue underage sex slaves” in Southeast Asian brothels, according to an April 13 report from MSN.
The story of how LaRoche ended up trying to rescue underage sex slaves will be recounted by writer Tim Keown in the April 25 issue of ESPN The Magazine. In the telling of that story, Tim Keown wrote that, accompanied by Milwaukee Brewers’ pitcher Blaine Boyer, the two worked covert surveillance watching over brothels in Southeast Asian wearing hidden cameras.
Working through the nonprofit organization, Exodus Road, LaRoche and Boyer tried figuring out the age of the working girls. The girls were only identified by numbers attached to the bikinis they were wearing. The guys also tried to determine who the girls’ bosses were.
Fox Sports reported Boyer as saying “Something huge happened there for us. You can’t explain it. Can’t put your finger on it. If you make a wrong move, you’re getting tossed off a building. We were in deep, man, but that’s the way it needed to be done. Adam and I truly believe God brought us there and said, ‘This is what I have for you boys.'”
When their undercover gig came to a close and the two ball players turned covert undercover agents were waiting to board an airplane for home, Fox quoted LaRoche as saying to Boyer “What are we doing? We’re going back to play a game for the next eight months?” The weight of their mission hit LaRoche as he said “I was sick. I was thinking about my kids and then thinking about the hundreds of thousands of parents who are searching for their 12-year-old daughters,” according to Fox.
The reality of covering the brothels in an effort to rescue underage sex slaves most likely helped LaRoche to retire sooner than later and more easily walk away from a lucrative contract with the Chicago White Sox. LaRoche will be loading his family into an RV in the next few days to tour the countryside. “They will hit the mountains of Big Bear and then head west and north to the California Redwoods, then Oregon, Washington and British Columbia,” according to ESPN.