Ubaldo Jimenez was included on the Orioles’ roster for the ALDS, but never actually pitched against the Tigers. And now he’s been dropped from the ALCS roster in favor of left-hander Brian Matusz.
It’s hard to imagine a scenario in which manager Buck Showalter would use Jimenez in a game that wasn’t completely lopsided and with off days there isn’t really much need for a bullpen-saving mop-up man in the playoffs.
Who knows if Showalter will find a use for Matusz, but there’s at least some chance he’ll call on the 27-year-old southpaw to face a left-handed hitter in a spot that matters. Matusz had a 3.48 ERA this season and a 3.53 ERA last season, with good secondary numbers to match, whereas Jimenez had a 4.81 ERA with 5.5 walks per nine innings in the first season of a $50 million contract.
In March, Major League Baseball agreed to pay minor league players $400 per week while the sport is shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic. That provision is set to expire at the end of May. As Craig noted earlier, the Athletics will not be paying their minor leaguers starting on June 1.
Several teams are doing the right thing, continuing to pay their minor leaguers $400 per week through at least the end of June. Per The Athletic’s Levi Weaver and James Fegan, the Rangers and White Sox will each tack on another month of pay. The Athletic’s Dennis Lin reported earlier that the Padres will pay their players through the end of August. Craig also cited a Baseball America report from this morning, which mentioned that the Marlins will also pay their players through the end of August.
Frankly, if the Marlins can find a way to continue paying their minor league players, then every team should be able to do the same. The Marlins are widely believed to be the least profitable among the 30 major league clubs. Here’s hoping the rest of the league follows the Rangers’, White Sox’s, Padres’, and Marlins’ lead as opposed to the Athletics’.