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Sunday Bantering: Jays to pay minor leaguers more

And Open Thread for Sunday Jays Spring Game

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays-Workouts Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning. I hope you all have a nice St. Patrick’s day. I had a couple of Guinness last night, at my favorite within walking distance bar. Ireland is on my list of places to visit (since Minor League didn’t take me along with him). I’ve been to England, Scotland and Wales. I had a very nice biking tour around Cornwall a couple of years ago. Of course, no one told me that there is no flat ground in Cornwall, but Cornwall is as beautiful as any place I’ve ever been.


There is some good news in the world. The Blue Jays are going to give all their minor league player a pay increase of ‘more than’ 50%. So far, they are the only team to announce pay increases, but I’m hoping that other teams will follow suit.

It really is a crime, or would be a crime if politicians didn’t always side with the rich in this sort of thing, how poorly MLB pays minor leaguers, so this is a step in the right direction. NBC Sports tells us:

At the moment, Single-A players make around $1,100 a month, Triple-A players around $2,100-$2,500 a month and are not paid for the offseason, when they have to train and often must attend team events, or for spring training where, obviously, attendance is mandatory. A 50% raise over that still pays many of these players less than minimum wage on an hourly basis over the course of a year, but bumps some over and, in any event, is certainly a substantial increase. Is it good enough? Not really. But it’s a start and a welcome change of approach by at least one club.

In the Athletic there is a quote from Ben Cherington:

“It puts us right now up at the top of the scale in the industry,” Jays vice president of baseball operations Ben Cherington said on Saturday. “My hope is it doesn’t stay that way. My hope is other teams eventually do the same.

“We hope that it allows our players to have the freedom and comfort to make some good choices, whether it’s where to live, where to eat, etc. We just feel like it’s consistent with our values of trying to be a player-centered organization and give them every resource possible to be at their best.”

It is really great to hear. The Jays front office deserves praise for this, as much as I’m hoping it is just a first stop. It is good to see that the front office has some empathy for the players in their minor league system. And, let’s face it, this isn’t going to hurt the teams bottom line much.

We get another game on TV today and we will be getting Jays broadcasters, not that I didn’t enjoy the YES network’s broadcast team yesterday. Former Jays (and Yankees) David Cone and David Wells were interesting and funny. I think it is Buck and Joe Siddall today

There was a late change in the Jays lineup. Jonathan Davis was to play CF but was taken out of the lineup. I’m hoping he isn’t hurt. He’s been getting a fair bit of playing time this spring.

Update: And now there has been a second change, Rodrigo Orozco now will not be the CFer, Dalton Pompey will be in that spot.

Aaron Sanchez gets the start for the Jays. He hasn’t allowed a run yet this spring. I’m looking forward to seeing him pitch.

We get Randal Grichuk in the leadoff spot, where we will see him a bit this season. Gurriel gets a game at short. With Travis likely to start the season on the 60-day DL, Lourdes will be playing a lot of second base.

Today's Lineups

Michael Reed - LF Randal Grichuk - DH
Ronald Torreyes - 2B Billy McKinney - LF
Jake Cave - CF Lourdes Gurriel - SS
Tyler Austin - 1B Justin Smoak - 1B
Mitch Garver - C Cavan Biggio - 2B
Ehire Adrianza - SS Anthony Alford - RF
Lucas Duda - DH Richard Urena - 3B
Adam Rosales - 3B Dalton Pompey - CF
Alex Kirilloff - RF Luke Maile - C