March 31, 2020 at 5:51 pm #125743
Ty Kelly was with Memphis a few years ago and is active in minor league player rights issues. He is saying players are being released now. Apparently the transaction freeze is only for MLB.
Unfortunately this news is accompanied by a wave of Minor Leaguers finding out they’ve been released. I’m glad guys will be able to pay their rent but it didn’t have to come at other players’ expense. https://t.co/KZ8Y0cy5KM
— Ty Kelly (@tykelly11) March 31, 2020March 31, 2020 at 8:28 pm #125744
Another source, a player agent, is reporting the teams making the minor league releases include the Cardinals. To quote a certain front office exec, the “optics” of this are not good.
— Chris Madden (@MLBAgentMadden) March 31, 2020March 31, 2020 at 9:17 pm #125745
Not to diminish the good that is done with money from a player’s, or any other wealthy person’s, foundation…. But I think the way it works is that the player can donate half of his salary to his foundation and not pay taxes on it. The player can then appoint whomever he wants as administrators of his foundation, including heirs and relatives. These administrators can then pay themselves whatever salary they want to for administering the foundation. I don’t think there is a requirement that any amount of the money in the foundation is spent for charitable purposes once it’s established, regardless of expectations.
Just think of how much better the world would be for everybody if there were more people like Adam Wainwright.April 1, 2020 at 4:04 pm #125791gscottarParticipantPaid - AnnualApril 2, 2020 at 7:20 am #125816
And another player helping out. Why isn’t their Union doing it?April 2, 2020 at 10:29 am #125835
At the very least the players’ union could be encouraging its members to help. Regardless, it is nice to see MLB and so far, a handful of players, showing that they care. This is the way it ought to be.April 3, 2020 at 2:22 pm #125918
The Union is now doing something. This helps the 20 non-roster invitees still officially in Cardinals camp
– if players with zero service time qualify. Full details TBA.
P.S. It seems like the primary targets here are like Matt Wieters last year. In other words, MLB veterans who came to camp without an MLB contract, but hoped to earn one by Opening Day.
The players’ union has set up a support program for non-roster players in spring training who were not covered in the advance payment the union received from MLB. More than 300 players eligible for money that would supplement $400 per week they will receive from MLB through 5/31.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) April 3, 2020
Non-roster players who will receive the payments from the union are broken down into five tiers according to service time. Those with six years or more in majors can earn as much as $50K. Program is voluntary; players who are more financially secure can choose not to participate.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) April 3, 2020April 3, 2020 at 2:37 pm #125919
OK, this tweet gives more info. The only Cardinal eligible is catcher Oscar Hernandez.
Good news from MLBPA: The union will distribute money to any non-roster player with at least one day of major league service who was still in big league camp as of March 13. The payouts depend on service time:
0-1 year: $5,000
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) April 3, 2020April 4, 2020 at 12:46 pm #125974
We covered a lot of ground in a very short period of time. For those interested in player compensation – majors and minors – during this period, please check out this free article. It has been updated with developing news since Wednesday's podcast. https://t.co/F3FliLzgcK
— Brian Walton (@B_Walton) April 4, 2020April 5, 2020 at 4:40 pm #126044April 9, 2020 at 10:54 am #126313
$400 across the board is better for those at lower levels, but not for upper level players.
Giving this a bump. Talked to a few guys who don't want to publicly complain about the $400/wk teams pledged in April but it's less than umemployment in some states. A lot of guys, esp those with families and mortgages, seriously considering hanging it up. https://t.co/GIrZlMk8di
— Britt Ghiroli (@Britt_Ghiroli) April 9, 2020April 13, 2020 at 8:13 am #126541
Ben Frederickson has a piece in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch titled ‘Ten sports traditions I hope don’t come back after the shutdown’. Here’s one of his comments regarding minor league salaries:
Minor league martyrdom: There is a developing trend in baseball that has me confused. Some have turned campaigning for the increased pay of minor league baseball players into life’s most important mission. Should these guys make more? Sure. Should major leaguers do more to support minor leaguers, considering they know firsthand how tough that time can be? Absolutely. Are minor leaguers that different from aspiring artists, musicians or actors in that they chose to pursue a job that makes millionaires out of those who do it best, and spits out those who don’t? Not really.April 13, 2020 at 8:49 am #126545
That raised a huge social media furor on Easter Sunday.
Derrick Goold tweeted part of the BenFred comment from his column and then engaged a number of people upset with the characterization. Goold went on to try to draw a parallel with teachers and drew a lot of flak for furthering what many see as a false equivalency. (Aren’t full-time employees of a $10.8 BB company with antitrust protection, etc.)
I chose to stay out of the fray as plenty of others took exception.
Lawyer Garrett Broshuis, a former minor leaguer, leads the minor league player salary lawsuit now in the Federal court system. He called BenFred’s words “a frequent but horrible take that falls apart with the slightest scrutiny” and chided him for the use of the inflammatory “martyrdom” characterization. (My observation: Without greater public attention driven by these supposed martyrs, not the traditional media, minor leaguers would never have gained across the board salary increases committed for 2021.)
For his part, BenFred, who really let Goold do the heavy lifting in the Twitter arguments, said his intent was to explain to his readers why he does not write more about the issue. It is not that important to him. Broshuis offered to sit down with him to discuss the matter. From there, it seemed to die out.
Two words: ANTITRUST EXEMPTION.
Musicians are paid their market value.
Minor League ballplayers are not.
It's a monopsony.
That makes all the difference. https://t.co/0H20wCrvd7
— Garrett Broshuis (@broshuis) April 12, 2020April 13, 2020 at 10:03 am #126552Minuteman3ParticipantFree
For some reason I have never been taken by BenFred. In fact I usually just skip his columns now. Perhaps this is one example.April 13, 2020 at 12:26 pm #126559
Of course lawyers and anybody else who has a vested interest in collecting millions from MLB would scream like banshees at anyone or anything that tends to undermine their position.
For what its worth, I think that minor league ballplayers should be taken care of better than they have been. But I also I think that is part of the objective of this whole restructuring thing that’s going on. On the other hand, I don’t think these kids need to be coddled by MLB. They need to accept and bear the responsibility for what they are doing. Some of them shouldn’t even be playing professional baseball if they’re thinking they can make a career of it, and all of them can leave and get on with their lives anytime they want to make that choice. Playing minor league baseball isn’t a real job with a defined future. It’s living a dream of sorts, and sometimes dreams manifest, sometimes they don’t. I hate to see a select cadre of lawyers enriching themselves over this. Baseball is not a business, baseball is America’s pastime.
I’d like to know the formula for determining who and what determines the market value of a minor league ballplayer.April 13, 2020 at 12:47 pm #126565
BenFred’s comment about this might be controversial, but it is one that hadn’t been stated before, and it should have been mentioned. The players and the MLBPA have been saying that they are entertainers in order to justify the big money they get for a long time now. It’s a shame that they have to struggle the way they do. But it’s a fact of life that there are these struggling artists, including actors and musicians, who have made sacrifices in pursuit of their goal.April 13, 2020 at 1:19 pm #126571
Artists and ballplayers and teachers are apples and oranges and grapefruit. It is a false equivalency. Making broad generalizations disregard the reality that they struggle for very different reasons.April 13, 2020 at 1:21 pm #126572Minuteman3ParticipantFree
But it’s a fact of life that there are these struggling artists, including actors and musicians, who have made sacrifices in pursuit of their goal.
One big exception. They don’t all work for the same organization that issues their paychecks and pretty much controls their lives if they wish to have a chance to succeed. They don’t all train for no pay other than a small allowance. Aw shucks – there just isn’t any comparison is what I am trying to say.April 13, 2020 at 7:53 pm #126596
I disagree. It’s not a false equivalency, and they don’t struggle for different reasons. I didn’t say anything about teachers and I don’t know where that came from. But artists and baseball players do have a commonality. They both perform within the field of aesthetics, and they are both chasing a dream of fame and fortune, and they are both making sacrifices in their pursuit of that dream. It’s encouraging to see that MLB is moving in the direction of doing things to improve conditions for minor league ballplayers, and it would be nice to see the MLBPA add to that.April 13, 2020 at 8:01 pm #126598
MM3 – I disagree with you, too. Artists do all work for the same organization and that organization does control them. The name of that organization is ‘Hollywood’. And not only do they train for no
pay, but they have to come up with their own money to get the training that they need.April 13, 2020 at 8:03 pm #126599
As I wrote above, Goold brought up teachers yesterday.
Hollywood is not a company with employees. The comparison holds no water.
Generally I find those who make these comparisons are trying to draw attention away from the real issues. With government protection, very profitable MLB teams can pay full-time employees less than the minimum wage (that every other business in this country is bound to) – and require them to participate in camps of weeks and months duration with no pay at all. They have no collective representation. They are not allowed to seek employment elsewhere in their field. They cannot file for unemployment even when not being paid because they are still under contract. And on and on…April 13, 2020 at 8:44 pm #126601
Leftists are all the same….hate, hate, hate.April 13, 2020 at 8:57 pm #126603
Putting labels on others is another common approach when one has no productive or responsible answer. You have no idea what my political leanings are and I have no intention of sharing that information, especially on a baseball forum. But I know baseball well, I know corporations well and I know right from wrong. Minor league pay is wrong and has been for a very long time. Only through broader public awareness in recent years is it finally being addressed.
Just now, (while looking for something else, NY-Penn League MVPs, an award that apparently does not exist), I ran across this article. It comes from that well-known left-leaning website, SB Nation. 😉April 13, 2020 at 9:16 pm #126605
I completely agree that my comment is inappropriate and does not belong on a baseball forum. To anyone who might find my comment offensive, please accept my apology. Then, lets move on…..except that there’s hardly a place to move on to, at least for now. I wish….. I wish….. I wish some league somewhere could get started.April 13, 2020 at 9:28 pm #126606
Well, there are a few games in the Orient. But I have not yet been desperate enough to try to watch one of them. FS Midwest has been showing old Cardinals games, but I have mostly been writing. That will work for days and maybe even weeks, but not months. Others are much, much worse off, though…
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