David Aardsma cleared to pitch in rehab games

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It’s easily forgotten by now, but the Yankees signed right-handed reliever David Aardsma to a one-year, $500,000 free agent contract back in late February.

And they might actually get something out of the deal before the regular season schedule ends.

Erik Boland of Newsday in New York reports that Aardsma is scheduled to begin a minor league rehab assignment on Friday evening with High-A Tampa. He will be joined there by Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, who is on his way back from a fractured hand.

Aardsma hasn’t pitched in the majors since the 2010 season because of hip and elbow injuries. The 30-year-old has a 4.20 career ERA and a 1.43 career WHIP. He saved 38 games for the Mariners in 2009.

Oakland Athletics reverse course, will continue to pay minor leaguers

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Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Oakland Athletics owner John Fisher has reversed course and will continue to pay minor leaguers. Fisher tells Slusser, “I concluded I made a mistake.” He said he is also setting up an assistance fund for furloughed employees.

The A’s decided in late May to stop paying paying minor leaguers as of June 1, which was the earliest date on which any club could do so after an MLB-wide agreement to pay minor leaguers through May 31 expired. In the event, the A’s were the only team to stop paying the $400/week stipends to players before the end of June. Some teams, notable the Royals and Twins, promised to keep the payments up through August 31, which is when the minor league season would’ve ended. The Washington Nationals decided to lop off $100 of the stipends last week but, after a day’s worth of blowback from the media and fans, reversed course themselves.