Rick Porcello is back in the Red Sox’s rotation after missing a month

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After missing the past month with a triceps injury Red Sox right-hander Rick Porcello is off the disabled list and will start tonight against the White Sox.

Porcello has had a miserable first season in Boston, going 5-11 with a 5.81 ERA in 20 starts after coming over in an offseason trade from Detroit and signing a four-year, $82.5 million contract extension.

Porcello had a 3.43 ERA for the Tigers last season in what appeared to be a breakout year at age 25, but posted a 4.51 ERA from 2009-2013 and has never struck out more than 7.2 batters per nine innings in a season. He’s owed $20 million in 2016, $20 million in 2017, $21 million in 2018, and $21 million in 2019, so much like Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez he’s a big part of the Red Sox’s plans whether they like it or not.

Max Scherzer: ‘There’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions’

Max Scherzer
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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.

Scherzer’s statement:

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.