Why is Adrian Gonzalez’s father suing Major League Baseball?

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It has nothing to do with Adrian. It has everything to do with a 17 year-old pitching prospect named Daniel Pesqueira. Jorge Arangure of Sports on Earth has the story and it’s a fascinating one.

Pesqueira was in Fort Myers, trying out for the Red Sox and likely to receive a contract offer when Major League Baseball informed him that, contrary to what Pesqueira believed, he was under contract with the Mexico City Diablos Rojos of the Liga Mexicana de Beisbol (LMB). The only evidence that Pesqueira was under contract with Mexico City: a couple of exceedingly sketchy documents and Major League Baseball’s refusal to question the LMB’s assertions about their validity at all.

Enter David Gonzalez, who has taken up Pesqueira’s case, suing Major League Baseball and attempting to expose and ultimately put an end to the often shady dealings between LMB and MLB which keep Mexican ballplayers in a state which some of them call virtual slavery. What’s more: the pendency and outcome of the case could throw a major wrench into Major League Baseball’s plans to institute an international draft, as it seems so intent on doing.

Check out Arangure’s story and marvel at how much damage can be caused by some folks looking to make a few bucks and some other folks not having the nerve to rock the boat.

Zack Cozart thinks the way the Rays have been using Sergio Romo is bad for baseball

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The Rays started Sergio Romo on back-to-back days and if that sounds weird to you, you’re not alone. Romo, of course, was the star closer for the Giants for a while, helping them win the World Series in 2012 and ’14. He’s been a full-time reliever dating back to 2006, when he was at Single-A.

In an effort to prevent lefty Ryan Yarbrough from facing the righty-heavy top of the Angels’ lineup (Zack Cozart, Mike Trout, Justin Upton), Romo started Saturday’s game, pitching the first inning before giving way to Yarbrough in the second. Romo struck out the side, in fact. The Rays went on to win 5-3.

The Rays did it again on Sunday afternoon, starting Romo. This time, he got four outs before giving way to Matt Andriese. Romo walked two without giving up a hit while striking out three. The Angels managed to win 5-2 however.

Despite Sunday’s win, Cozart wasn’t a happy camper with the way the Rays used Romo. Via Fabian Ardaya of The Athletic, Cozart said, “It was weird … It’s bad for baseball, in my opinion … It’s spring training. That’s the best way to explain it.”

It’s difficult to see merit in Cozart’s argument. It’s not like the Rays were making excessive amounts of pitching changes; they used five on Saturday and four on Sunday. The games lasted three hours and three hours, 15 minutes, respectively. The average game time is exactly three hours so far this season. I’m having trouble wondering how else Cozart might mean the strategy is bad for baseball.

It seems like the real issue is that Cozart is afraid of the sport changing around him. The Rays, like most small market teams, have to find their edges in slight ways. The Rays aren’t doing this blindly; the strategy makes sense based on their opponents’ starting lineup. The idea of valuing on-base percentage was scoffed at. Shifting was scoffed at and now every team employs them to some degree. Who knows if starting a reliever for the first three or four outs will become a trend, but it’s shortsighted to write it off at first glance.