Fractured finger sends A’s shortstop Jed Lowrie to the disabled list

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Oakland shortstop Jed Lowrie initially hoped to play through a fractured right index finger, but now the A’s have placed him on the disabled list.

Lowrie suffered the injury when he took a hard ground ball off his finger last week and went 1-for-11 at the plate while also feeling pain on most throws defensively before shutting things down.

Lowrie had a breakout 2013 season for the A’s, hitting .290 with a .791 OPS while staying healthy for the first time in his career. He’d been healthy this season until the finger injury, but his production has slipped to a .238 batting average and .671 OPS with free agency right around the corner this winter.

Minor League Baseball eclipses 40 million in attendance for 14th consecutive season

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Minor League Baseball announced on Wednesday that, for the 14th consecutive season, the league has eclipsed 40 million in total attendance. 20 teams set single-game attendance records and seven teams set franchise records for single-game attendance in their current parks.

ESPN’s Keith Law, who has been covering the minor leagues for quite a while, did the math:

Minor League Baseball president and CEO Pat O’Conner, whose most prominent stint in the public eye involved him disingenuously justifying the underpaying of his players, said, “Minor League Baseball continues to be the best entertainment value in sports, and these numbers support that. For us to top 40 million fans for the 14th consecutive season despite the weather challenges our teams faced in April and May is a testament to the continued support of our loyal fan bases and the creative promotions and hard work done by all of our teams across the country.”

Major and Minor League Baseball are quite happy to make money hand over fist on the backs of their players, but are too cheap to pay them adequately for their labor.