Wil Myers could play center field for the Padres

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The Padres made yet another off-season splash this morning when they announced a trade with the Braves for outfielder Justin Upton. Along with recent trades to acquire Matt Kemp and Wil Myers, the Padres now have a fearsome outfield. Offensively speaking, that is.

Defense is another matter. As @AceballStats pointed out on Twitter, Upton was rated the best defender of the trio by Defensive Runs Saved… at 0.0. Myers clocked in at -7 and Kemp at -23. Further, neither is much of a centerfielder. Kemp has arthritic hips and Myers has logged only 53 innings in center compared to 1,279 in right field.

Naturally, the question “Who plays center field?” popped up and was promptly addressed by manager Bud Black. Myers is a possibility in center, per Dennis Lin of U-T San Diego. The plan is to have Kemp in right field and Upton in left. The Padres’ outfield defense should be interesting, to say the least. Who knows how many of the runs they gain on offense from the trio will be siphoned by poor defense in that spacious park of theirs.

Nationals’ major leaguers to continue offering financial assistance to minor leaguers

Sean Doolittle
Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images
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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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.