Remember how we heard earlier this week that Curt Schilling’s video game company, 38 Studios, was going through some rough times? Well, things are looking even more dire now.
According to Erika Niedowski and Laura Crimaldi of the Associated Press, 38 Studios tried to pass off a bad $1.1 million check to Rhode Island as payment on a loan. Yikes.
38 Studios was originally based in Massachusetts, but Rhode Island lured the company in 2010 with a $75 million loan guarantee that they hoped would bring new jobs to the state. Things haven’t exactly worked out as planned. Schilling’s company couldn’t make the $1.1 million payment on May 1 as expected and after the check was finally hand-delivered to the state’s Economic Development Corp. earlier this evening, a company official told the agency that there were insufficient funds to cover the owed amount.
38 Studios asked for additional state assistance yesterday and it appears that if they can’t get a loan from someone, they could go belly-up pretty soon.
CSN Philly’s Jim Salisbury reports that Phillies outfielder Nick Williams has been working out daily with free agent starter Jake Arrieta in Austin. The right-hander, who won the 2015 National League Cy Young Award, still remains teamless with spring training less than a month away. Williams has been trying to sell Arrieta on joining the Phillies.
Williams said of Arrieta, “He loves it here [Austin]. He has told me he likes working with young guys. I’m like, ‘All right, come on up.’ But I’m not writing the check. I don’t know what he wants. I don’t really dig into that because I’m not really in his position.”
On GM Matt Klentak’s hunt for pitching help, new manager Gabe Kapler said, “The pursuit is very real. I have a lot of trust that we’ll either go in [to spring training] with a new toy or we will pass on the opportunity because we’re better off giving this collection of pitchers a really healthy look because we thought that we could go acquire that piece a little bit later on this season or in the offseason next year.”
Arrieta, who turns 32 years old in March, went 14-10 with a 3.53 ERA and a 163/55 K/BB ratio in 168 1/3 innings last season with the Cubs. The Cubs, Cardinals, and Brewers have been linked to Arrieta this month.
Presently, the Phillies’ starting rotation figures to include Aaron Nola, Jerad Eickhoff, and Vince Velasquez along with some combination of Nick Pivetta, Ben Lively, Zach Eflin, Mark Leiter, and Jake Thompson. Arrieta would certainly amount to a big upgrade in the starting rotation and could make the Phillies a more attractive landing spot for Bryce Harper or Manny Machado, who become free agents after the 2018 campaign. The Phillies are expected to be in the mix for either or both players.