Not just Adrian Gonzalez: The Dodgers have claimed Josh Beckett too

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Claiming Adrian Gonzalez is one thing, but claiming Josh Beckett too?  Yep, the Dodgers have done that, Sean McAdam of CSNNE confirms.

This is a little different than the Adrian Gonzalez claim.  For one thing, the Red Sox may very well just want to be rid of Josh Beckett. The fan base has turned on him and, depending on how much blame you put on him for the clubhouse problems in Boston — probably nowhere near as much as some folks claim, but in Boston everything sucks right now — it’s not like you have to sell the fans on letting him go.  The fact that he’s pitched like butt this year makes it easier too.  He’s due $35 million through the end of 2014 too, so losing him saves a lot of money.

But it’s also different in that Beckett has 10/5 rights, and a player with 10/5 rights has the right to block waiver claims too.  Beckett has given no indication that he’d waive his no-trade protection in the past, although things have gotten way worse in Boston lately so maybe he’s of a different mind about such things now.  Added incentive: pitching in the NL West could really help him rebound between now and 2014 when he’ll likely want to cash in on one last big free agency deal.

One final possibility: maybe the Dodgers claim of both Gonzalez and Beckett is the precursor to a gigantic mega-trade/player dump involving the two teams.  Again, the Dodgers don’t have that much to offer besides salary relief, but weirder things have happened. I think.

Stay tuned!

MLBPA proposes 114-game season, playoff expansion to MLB

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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Major League Baseball Players Association has submitted a proposal to the league concerning the 2020 season. The proposal includes a 114-game season with an end date on October 31, playoff expansion for two years, the right for players to opt out of the season, and a potential deferral of 2020 salaries if the postseason were to be canceled.

Passan clarifies that among the players who choose to opt out, only those that are considered “high risk” would still receive their salaries. The others would simply receive service time. The union also proposed that the players receive a non-refundable $100 million sum advance during what would essentially be Spring Training 2.

If the regular season were to begin in early July, as has often been mentioned as the target, that would give the league four months to cram in 114 games. There would have to be occasional double-headers, or the players would have to be okay with few off-days. Nothing has been mentioned about division realignment or a geographically-oriented schedule, but those could potentially ease some of the burden.

Last week, the owners made their proposal to the union, suggesting a “sliding scale” salary structure. The union did not like that suggestion. Players were very vocal about it, including on social media as Max Scherzer — one of eight players on the union’s executive subcommittee — made a public statement. The owners will soon respond to the union’s proposal. They almost certainly won’t be happy with many of the details, but the two sides can perhaps find a starting point and bridge the gap. As the calendar turns to June, time is running out for the two sides to hammer out an agreement on what a 2020 season will look like.