For the second time this season one of the Twins’ starting outfielders got hurt and when he was ready to come off the disabled list they instead demoted him to the minors.
The first time it was Opening Day left fielder Oswaldo Arcia, who remains at Triple-A two months later. And now it’s stud center field prospect Byron Buxton, whose much-hyped MLB debut in mid-June lasted just 11 games before he suffered a thumb injury.
Buxton played three minor-league rehab games at Triple-A, going 5-for-12 (.417) with one double, two walks, and one stolen base. That convinced the Twins we was healthy, but they didn’t want to activate him and didn’t want him to keep accumulating MLB service time on the DL. So now he’s simply at Triple-A.
Minnesota will stick with Aaron Hicks in center field and Torii Hunter and Eddie Rosario in the outfield corners, with Shane Robinson getting more playing time than he deserves as the fourth outielder. After a strong start to the season the Twins have the AL’s worst record since June 1 at 25-37.
MLBPA player representative Max Scherzer sent out a short statement late Wednesday night regarding the ongoing negotiations between the owners and the union. On Tuesday, ownership proposed a “sliding scale” salary structure on top of the prorated pay cuts the players already agreed to back in March. The union rejected the proposal, with many worrying that it would drive a wedge in the union’s constituency.
Scherzer is one of eight players on the MLBPA executive subcommittee along with Andrew Miller, Daniel Murphy, Elvis Andrus, Cory Gearrin, Chris Iannetta, James Paxton, and Collin McHugh.
After discussing the latest developments with the rest of the players there’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions. We have previously negotiated a pay cut in the version of prorated salaries, and there’s no justification to accept a 2nd pay cut based upon the current information the union has received. I’m glad to hear other players voicing the same viewpoint and believe MLB’s economic strategy would completely change if all documentation were to become public information.
Indeed, aside from the Braves, every other teams’ books are closed, so there has been no way to fact-check any of the owners’ claims. Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts, for example, recently said that 70 percent of the Cubs’ revenues come from “gameday operations” (ticket sales, concessions, etc.). But it went unsubstantiated because the Cubs’ books are closed. The league has only acknowledged some of the union’s many requests for documentation. Without supporting evidence, Ricketts’ claim, like countless others from team executives, can only be taken as an attempt to manipulate public sentiment.
Early Thursday morning, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that the MLBPA plans to offer a counter-proposal to MLB in which the union would suggest a season of more than 100 games and fully guaranteed prorated salaries. It seems like the two sides are quite far apart, so it may take longer than expected for them to reach an agreement.