Alex Meyer’s bid for an Opening Day spot on Minnesota’s pitching staff was unsuccessful, as the Twins have sent the 25-year-old right-hander to Triple-A.
Meyer is a former first-round draft pick and consensus top-100 prospect three years in a row, but he’s also already 25 years old and spent all of last season at Triple-A. For some context: He’s just five months younger than Madison Bumgarner, who’s thrown more than 1,000 innings for the Giants and was the World Series MVP.
By sending Meyer to Triple-A for a second go-around following spring training control problems the Twins are all but committed to either Mike Pelfrey or Tommy Milone as their fifth starter, with the loser of the rotation competition likely going to the bullpen as a long reliever.
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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.