Specifically, he was declared academically ineligible for a short time, some said that he was cocky, and various sources claimed "his father is in prison on drug charges while his mother reportedly has drug issues" or things to that affect.
Yesterday, we received an anonymous comment on the post I wrote from someone claiming to be Slade's mother, Kimberly. I recognize that this is not the most infallible source, but the post had been up for four days with little activity beyond the first day and there were details within the comment that I personally don't think it would be likely for a random person to fabricate. Giving the timing and the content, I would tend to assume it was her. That's my opinion, you can judge for yourself:
Yes, this is Slade's mother Kimberly and I am not sure where all this mess about me being out of his life and drugs is coming from , but I assure you I am in regular contact with my son and attend his games. I moved to another town recently due to getting remarried. I also have a 16 yr old and he does live with me. Slade stayed in TK to finish high school. I am a very devoted and loving mother whom has given her whole life to her kids. I don't touch drugs or cigarettes and never have, I appal them. His father has had problems in the PAST due to a car accident. He is not in prison and is clean. However, I do appreciate you very much taking the time to write about my son. We are very proud parents of both our boys. They are great, great kids as anyone will tell you! Thank you...
Take it for what it's worth. I tried to verify what Slade's mother's name was, and see if I could verify any of the information in the comment, but basic Google searches and reaching out to other Yankee bloggers who had written about Slade came up empty.
During my research, I came across an interview with Slade by Lane Meyer from No Maas which was conducted before the Yankees actually drafted him. It's pretty lengthy, but a really interesting read if you are looking to find out more about Heathcott. He says "yes, sir" and "no, sir" constantly and comes across as anything but cocky.
Then, today, Lane posted another interview which addressed some of the character issues above:
Lane Meyer: Scouting reports said there were “character issues” that may be a problem with you. What would you want to tell the fans that ask about that?
Slade Heathcott: I checked into that myself because I was kind of curious why that came up. I haven’t lived with my parents for two years due to various issues between them - things that happened that I have no control over. Historically, society has a tendency to see kids having troubles when they don’t have parental guidance in their life, that if they have parent issues it tends to carry over onto them. Well that’s not the case with me. It doesn’t bother me, it doesn’t change me, I don’t get into trouble, and I’m not going to get into trouble. But the parents issue is why that popped up, and that makes sense to me, but I’m not like everybody else or the stereotype that people want to associate with my situation - It doesn’t affect me in anything I do.
Lane Meyer: Great to hear. You said you haven’t been living with your parents - whom have you been staying with?
Slade Heathcott: I had been staying with my friend’s family and I finally moved in with my Grandpa. He had gotten sick about a year ago and was seeing a bunch of doctors, so I ended up moving in with a friend’s family, and they were wonderful about it. Finally everything got straightened out with his health and I moved back in with him about four months ago.
Slade's comments would seem to be in accordance with comment we received, that he hasn't lived with his parents, but doesn't say anything about that "being out of his life" as was originally intimated. Not that your relationship with your parents is a perfect indicator of what kind of person you are, but it sounds like he's got a fairly stable living situation, which is an important part of growing up.
As someone who was part of spreading the initial rumors about his supposed parents drug usage, I wanted to do my part to set the record straight. I haven't been able to determine where this notion actually originated, but it seems to be an off-the-record source. It's possible, I suppose that a team with the intentions of drafting him could have propagated some false rumors to knock down his value. This type of thing is face more common in the NFL draft, but I wouldn't put it past an MLB club to try and pull such a stunt. Since the internet can sometimes be like one big game of telephone, all it takes is on salacious tidbit for it to spread like wildfire and teams should be aware of this by now.
So there it is. If anyone close to the situation has anything to add to this post, please find my email on the left side of the site, as opposed to leaving an anonymous comment. Thanks.