Athletics hopeful Bartolo Colon will return from DL on Thursday

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Bartolo Colon landed on the disabled list earlier this month with a right groin strain, but the second-place Athletics hope to get the All-Star right-hander back as soon as he’s eligible this week.

Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that Colon threw 38 pitches in a bullpen session this afternoon without incident. If all goes according to plan, the 40-year-old will return to face the Tigers on Thursday. Slusser speculates that Jesse Chavez could be an alternative if Colon can’t go, as the Athletics have already ruled out Brett Anderson as an option.

Colon was knocked around for five runs in back-to-back starts prior to going on the disabled list, but he still owns a fine 2.97 ERA over 154 1/3 innings this season. His 1.46 BB/9 is fifth-lowest among qualified starters.

Max Scherzer: ‘There’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions’

Max Scherzer
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MLBPA player representative Max Scherzer sent out a short statement late Wednesday night regarding the ongoing negotiations between the owners and the union. On Tuesday, ownership proposed a “sliding scale” salary structure on top of the prorated pay cuts the players already agreed to back in March. The union rejected the proposal, with many worrying that it would drive a wedge in the union’s constituency.

Scherzer is one of eight players on the MLBPA executive subcommittee along with Andrew Miller, Daniel Murphy, Elvis Andrus, Cory Gearrin, Chris Iannetta, James Paxton, and Collin McHugh.

Scherzer’s statement:

After discussing the latest developments with the rest of the players there’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions. We have previously negotiated a pay cut in the version of prorated salaries, and there’s no justification to accept a 2nd pay cut based upon the current information the union has received. I’m glad to hear other players voicing the same viewpoint and believe MLB’s economic strategy would completely change if all documentation were to become public information.

Indeed, aside from the Braves, every other teams’ books are closed, so there has been no way to fact-check any of the owners’ claims. Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts, for example, recently said that 70 percent of the Cubs’ revenues come from “gameday operations” (ticket sales, concessions, etc.). But it went unsubstantiated because the Cubs’ books are closed. The league has only acknowledged some of the union’s many requests for documentation. Without supporting evidence, Ricketts’ claim, like countless others from team executives, can only be taken as an attempt to manipulate public sentiment.

Early Thursday morning, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that the MLBPA plans to offer a counter-proposal to MLB in which the union would suggest a season of more than 100 games and fully guaranteed prorated salaries. It seems like the two sides are quite far apart, so it may take longer than expected for them to reach an agreement.