Mets sign Alex Castellanos

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In terms of headline-grabbing it’s a step down for the Mets after bringing in Michael Cuddyer yesterday, but they’ve signed infielder/outfielder Alex Castellanos to a minor-league deal with an invitation to spring training

Castellanos played briefly in the majors for the Dodgers in 2012 and 2013 after being acquired from the Cardinals for Rafael Furcal in 2011, but spent last season at Triple-A for the Padres.

He’s hit .286 with 44 homers, 43 steals, and an .869 OPS in 312 total games at Triple-A, which along with the ability to play second base, third base, and the outfield corners could make him a decent bench option at age 28.

Red Sox employees “livid” over team pay cut plan

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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.