White Sox reportedly nearing trade for Jeff Samardzija

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From Jon Heyman’s latest at CBSSports.com …

SAN DIEGO — The A’s are close to a deal involving Jeff Samardzija. It appears likely he’d be headed to the White Sox.

There was speculation the Red Sox were involved in talks, as well, but the South Side team, which also happens to be Samardzija’s hometown team, has been the most interested and appears like the likely winner.

Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports says the A’s front office has been eyeing White Sox infielder Marcus Semien, who could take over at shortstop next year in Oakland with Jed Lowrie departing as a free agent. Multiple prospects would also be headed the A’s way.

Semien has batted just .240/.293/.380 in 326 plate appearances at the major league level since debuting in 2013, but the 24-year-old had a cool .266/.368/.491 slash line and 19 homers in 115 games at Triple-A.

Samardzija is entering his contract year, so this is another sign that the White Sox are going for it in 2015. The 29-year-old former Notre Dame wide receiver had an outstanding 2.99 ERA, 1.065 WHIP, and 202/43 K/BB ratio in 219 2/3 innings (33 starts) this past season between the Cubs and Athletics.

Report: David Price to pay each Dodgers minor leaguer $1,000 out of his own pocket

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Francys Romero reports that, according to his sources, Dodgers pitcher David Price will pay $1,000 out of his own money to each Dodgers minor leaguer who is not on the 40-man roster during the month of June.

That’s a pretty amazing gesture from Price. It’s also extraordinarily telling that such a gesture is even necessary.

Under a March agreement with Major League Baseball, minor leaguers have been receiving financial assistance that is set to expire at the end of May. Baseball America reported earlier this week that the Dodgers will continue to pay their minor leaguers $400 per week past May 31, but it is unclear how long such payments would go. Even if one were to assume that the payments will continue throughout the month of June, however, it’s worth noting that $400 a week is not a substantial amount of money for players to live on, on which to support families, and on which to train and remain ready to play baseball if and when they are asked to return.

Price’s generosity should be lauded here, but this should not be considered a feel-good story overall. Major League Baseball, which has always woefully underpaid its minor leaguers has left them in a vulnerable position once again.