Earlier this week there was some talk of Alex Cobb trying the rest-and-rehab route after an MRI exam showed a torn elbow ligament, but the Rays announced that the 27-year-old right-hander has decided to undergo season-ending Tommy John surgery.
Cobb has been on the disabled list all season after experiencing forearm discomfort during spring training, but initial tests by the Rays were said to show no structural damage. Now he’s unlikely to be a factor in Tampa Bay again until at least the second half of next season.
It’s a huge loss for the Rays, as Cobb posted a sub-3.00 ERA in each of the past two seasons and has a 3.21 ERA in 499 career innings. Chris Archer, Drew Smyly, and Jake Odorizzi are still around to headline the Rays’ talented young rotation and they’re hoping to get All-Star left-hander Matt Moore back from his own Tommy John surgery soon.
In March, Major League Baseball agreed to pay minor league players $400 per week while the sport is shut down amid the coronavirus pandemic. That provision is set to expire at the end of May. As Craig noted earlier, the Athletics will not be paying their minor leaguers starting on June 1.
Several teams are doing the right thing, continuing to pay their minor leaguers $400 per week through at least the end of June. Per The Athletic’s Levi Weaver and James Fegan, the Rangers and White Sox will each tack on another month of pay. The Athletic’s Dennis Lin reported earlier that the Padres will pay their players through the end of August. Craig also cited a Baseball America report from this morning, which mentioned that the Marlins will also pay their players through the end of August.
Frankly, if the Marlins can find a way to continue paying their minor league players, then every team should be able to do the same. The Marlins are widely believed to be the least profitable among the 30 major league clubs. Here’s hoping the rest of the league follows the Rangers’, White Sox’s, Padres’, and Marlins’ lead as opposed to the Athletics’.