As expected the Indians have activated center fielder Michael Bourn from the disabled list following his latest stint on the sidelines with hamstring problems.
Bourn missed six weeks this time around and has struggled with hamstring injuries since last season, undergoing offseason surgery.
Bourn was once among the best base-stealers in MLB, swiping an average of 50 bases per 150 games from 2007-2012 and leading the league in steals in 2009, 2010, and 2011. However, the combination of being on the wrong side of 30 and all the leg problems have sapped his speed and he’s stolen a total of just 30 bases while being caught 15 times since the beginning of last season.
He’s owed $13.5 million in 2015 and $14 million in 2016.
Even Drellich of The Athletic reports that the Boston Red Sox are cutting the pay of team employees. Those cuts, which began to be communicated last night, apply to all employees making $50,000 or more. They are tiered cuts, with people making $50-99,000 seeing salary cut by 20%, those making $100k-$499,000 seeing $25% cuts and those making $500,000 or more getting 30% cuts.
Drellich reported that a Red Sox employee told him that “people are livid” over the fact that those making $100K are being treated the same way as those making $500K. And, yes, that does seem to be a pretty wide spread for similar pay cuts. One would think that a team with as many analytically-oriented people on staff could perhaps break things down a bit more granularly.
Notable in all of this that the same folks who own the Red Sox — Fenway Sports Group — own Liverpool FC of the English Premier League, and that just last month Liverpool’s pay cut/employee furlough policies proved so unpopular that they led to a backlash and a subsequent reversal by the club. That came after intense criticism from Liverpool fan groups and local politicians. Sox owner John Henry must be confident that no such backlash will happen in Boston.
As we noted yesterday, The Kansas City Royals, who are not as financially successful as the Boston Red Sox, have not furloughed employees or cut pay as a result of baseball’s shutdown in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Perhaps someone in Boston could call the Royals and ask them how they managed that.