It’s a pretty common thing for starting pitchers to disapprove when they’re removed somewhat early from games, but these comments from Phillies right-hander David Buchanan feel especially pointed …
“It caught me off-guard honestly,” Buchanan told Marc Narducci of the Philadelphia Inquirer after being lifted before the sixth inning of Saturday’s loss to the Cardinals. “I didn’t expect that and wasn’t too happy about that. I just do what I am told and go for as long as I can and unfortunately that was only five innings tonight but it definitely caught me off guard.”
Buchanan was only at 90 pitches when manager Ryne Sandberg pulled him, but he had allowed eight hits and two walks. The Phillies wound up having to use seven relievers in the 12-inning loss and will be short on rested arms for Sunday’s series finale with St. Louis.
Phillies outfielder Domonic Brown also voiced his displeasure with a recent lack of playing time after being double-switched with Grady Sizemore in the seventh inning Saturday. Brown has started just 24 games since the beginning of July. “I am not out there every day so it’s kind of tough coming off the bench,” he said.
It’s much easier for a team to get along when it’s playing winning baseball. The Phillies are 57-72.
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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.