The Phillies have shut down rookie starter Jonathan Pettibone for another three to six weeks, reports CSN Philly’s John Finger. The right-hander hasn’t started since the end of July due to a strained right shoulder. A recent MRI revealed inflammation in his right rotator cuff, but thankfully there is no structural damage. He will receive a second opinion from orthopedist Dr. Neal ElAttrache.
Amaro on Pettibone’s setback:
“We’re going to be cautious with Jonathan. We don’t want to mess around with him too much,” Amaro said. “He has inflammation of his rotator cuff and some of the normal changes on his labrum that normally happen at this stage of his career, so we’re going to shut him down.”
Pettibone was a bright spot in an otherwise grim season for the Phillies. He initially joined the rotation when John Lannan succumbed to an injury in April, but stuck around out of necessity. He posted a 4.04 ERA in 100.1 innings spread out over 18 starts.
In other injured Phillies starter news, Roy Halladay will make a third rehab start with Double-A Reading on Sunday. He has looked less-than-stellar in his previous two starts, but the Phillies are hoping he can shake that off this weekend and return to the rotation in time to make another four or five starts to give them an idea what he has left in the tank.
Over the past several weeks we’ve heard a lot of news about teams furloughing front office and scouting staff, leveling pay cuts for those who remain and, most recently, ceasing stipends to minor league players and releasing them en masse. The message being sent, intentionally or otherwise, is that baseball teams are feeling the pinch.
The Kansas City Royals, however, are a different story.
Jon Heyman reported this afternoon that the Royals are paying their minor leaguers through August 31, which is when the minor league season would’ve ended, and unlike so many other teams, they are not releasing players either. Jeff Passan, meanwhile, reports that the Royals will not lay any team employees off or furlough anyone. “Nearly 150 employees will not take pay cuts,” he says, though “higher-level employees will take tiered cuts.” Passan adds that the organization intends to restore the lost pay due to those higher-level employees in the future when revenue ramps back up, making them whole.
While baseball finances are murky at best and opaque in most instances, most people agree that the Royals are one of the lower-revenue franchises in the game. They are also near the bottom as far as franchise value goes. Finally, they have the newest ownership group in all of baseball, which means that the group almost certainly has a lot of debt and very little if any equity in the franchise. Any way you slice it, cashflow is likely tighter in Kansas City than almost anywhere else.
Yet the Royals are paying minor leaguers and front office employees while a great number of other teams are not. What’s their excuse?