Yankees right-hander Masahiro Tanaka took the mound today for his first bullpen session since being placed back on the disabled list, throwing 30 pitches at the team’s spring training complex in Florida.
Tanaka has been on the DL since April 29 with a strained forearm and wrist tendinitis. There’s no timetable yet for his return to the Yankees’ active roster and he’s not expected back before June.
However, after throwing Tanaka told reporters he was “happy about it” and “didn’t feel anything” wrong with his arm.
Prior to being shut down again Tanaka started four games with a 3.22 ERA and 24/7 K/BB ratio in 22 innings despite pitching much differently than he did before last season’s elbow problems.
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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.