Arizona has been mentioned before as a potential landing spot for Cuban outfielder Yasmany Tomas, but it was never really considered a strong likelihood. Maybe that perception should be changing …
According to FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, the Diamondbacks are among the “teams pushing hardest” to sign the 23-year-old, who defected from Cuba in June and was cleared to become a major league free agent in early October. Rosenthal also lists the Giants, Padres, and Braves as fellow serious suitors. It sounds as though the Phillies have recently backed off.
Tomas is scheduled to attend Major League Baseball’s annual Winter Meetings (December 7-11 in San Diego), so he probably won’t sign before then. Early estimates had him commanding over $100 million guaranteed, but if an offer like that was ever presented wouldn’t Tomas already have accepted it?
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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.