MLB’s planned pay raise for MiLB players is severely lacking

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One of MLB’s excuses for attempting to disaffiliate 42 minor-league teams following the 2020 season has been the need to increase pay for minor-league players. Obviously, players need to be paid more, but MLB tying these two events together is disingenuous: MLB’s owners can afford to keep every team in Minor League Baseball going and pay every minor-league player far more than they do now, and it would still be a drop in the proverbial bucket for them.

As has been said before, the average minor-league salary could be $50,000 per year, and it would cost each team about $7.5 million. That’s it! MLB is tying the disaffiliation of teams together with increasing pay as a threat to the thousands of minor-league players who will remain: this is what could happen to you and your team if you make too much noise about your pay.

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Save Minor League Baseball Task Force takes next step in the fight against MLB

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John Buck learned about Curt Flood, and made sure other players would, too

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Gerrit Cole signed with the Yankees for a massive nine-year, $324 million deal that gave him the largest annual average payout of any deal in MLB. It’s the kind of contract that’s only possible because free agency, as an institution, exists: Cole was allowed to go into the open market, freed from the initial deal he inked when the Pirates drafted him in 2011 and then brought him to the majors in 2013, and agreed to sign with the team he wanted to, for the immense money they had to offer in order to show it wasn’t a one-way desire.

It feels like a given these days that this order of operations exists, but Cole didn’t forget that the existence of free agency is what brought him to this point, and during his press conference introducing him as a Yankee, he thanked the first Executive Director of the Players Association, Marvin Miller, and Curt Flood, who challenged MLB and its longstanding reserve clause, for what they did to allow the moment Cole was in to even exist. On its own, it was an excellent gesture, the kind of thing Miller himself said didn’t happen often enough in his own time guiding the players’ union, but the backstory makes it an even better moment.

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Nolan Arenado is mad at the Rockies for reasons predictable to everyone besides the Rockies

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The world is burning, and athletes are silent

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The WNBPA should be proud of what they gained, but also what they didn’t lose

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Astros’ $5 million fine a reminder MLB works for the owners, not the other way around

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John Henry tries to pin blame for his own words about payroll on the media

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The Dodgers define themselves as successful for private reasons they won’t share with you

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Senne v. MLB wins another court victory

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​It’s taken years, as these things do, but the lawsuit Senne v. MLB has been picking up wins of late. In August of last year, Senne v. MLB — full name Aaron Senne et al. v. Kansas City Royals Baseball Corp — was granted class action status, allowing players to collectively seek unpaid wages for their time playing in Minor League Baseball. As we’ve covered in this space before, minor-league players are not paid for spring training, nor for the postseason, as they are paid just during the regular season, meaning low-level players are pulling in around $1,100 per month for less than half of the year. And, thanks to Congress, they aren’t eligible for overtime despite putting in well over 40 hours per week in the season, plus whatever offseason work needs to be performed in order to thrive in-season.

Now, there’s another W to stack on top of the transition to class action status, as the Ninth Circuit court denied MLB’s appeal over that status: that means the Supreme Court is the only place left to appeal to if MLB wants to avoid going to trial.

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