MLB.com’s Joe Frisario has an update on veteran infielder Rafael Furcal, who hasn’t appeared in a game this year …
The 36-year-old infielder’s legs are holding up nicely, and the Marlins could reinstate him as early as Friday for the start of the homestand against the Pirates.
“I don’t know when that day is coming, but it is probably coming soon,” Miami manager Mike Redmond said. “It was coming soon about a month ago, too, and it didn’t. I think it’s safe to say coming soon.”
Furcal signed a one-year, $3.5 million contract with Miami over the winter and was expected to open 2014 as the Marlins’ starting second baseman, but he injured his left hamstring at the end of spring training and then suffered a groin strain on a late-April rehab assignment.
Furcal hasn’t played in the majors since 2012, when he batted .264/.325/.346 for the Cardinals.
On Sunday, we learned that while the Nationals would continue to pay their minor leaguers throughout the month of June, their weekly stipend would be lowered by 25 percent, from $400 to $300. In an incredible act of solidarity, Nationals reliever Sean Doolittle and his teammates put out a statement, saying they would be covering the missing $100 from the stipends.
After receiving some criticism, the Nationals reversed course, agreeing to pay their minor leaguers their full $400 weekly stipend.
Doolittle and co. have not withdrawn their generosity. On Wednesday, Doolittle released another statement, saying that he and his major league teammates would continue to offer financial assistance to Nationals minor leaguers through the non-profit organization More Than Baseball.
The full statement:
Washington Nationals players were excited to learn that our minor leaguers will continue receiving their full stipends. We are grateful that efforts have been made to restore their pay during these challenging times.
We remain committed to supporting them. Nationals players are partnering with More Than Baseball to contribute funds that will offer further assistance and financial support to any minor leaguers who were in the Nationals organization as of March 1.
We’ll continue to stand with them as we look forward to resuming our 2020 MLB season.
Kudos to Doolittle and the other Nationals continuing to offer a helping hand in a trying time. The players shouldn’t have to subsidize their employers’ labor expenses, but that is the world we live in today.