Marlins pitching prospect Justin Nicolino was called up to start in place of Tom Koehler against the Reds on Saturday night, as Koehler is dealing with some neck and back pain, per Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald.
MLB.com’s Joe Frisaro hears that Koehler and Brad Hand may be involved in a developing trade with an unknown team. Details are vague at this point, but it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Marlins, entering play tonight with a 29-40 record, start to sell off some pieces as they are wont to do.
Koehler, 28, will be under team control through the 2018 season. This season, he’s 5-4 with a 3.76 ERA and a 57/30 K/BB ratio in 79 innings.
Hand, 25, is under team control through 2019. He has made three starts and 17 relief appearances for the Marlins thus far, compiling a 5.97 ERA and a 27/11 K/BB ratio over 37 2/3 innings.
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’.