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What’s on tap: Previewing tonight’s action

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Happy weekend once again. A full slate of action tonight like every Friday night. The highlight for those of you of a certain age is a rematch of the 1972 World Series. What? You don’t have a burning desire to relive the 1972 World Series? Man, nostalgia ain’t what it used to be.

Of more current relevance are the Orioles and Jays meeting in Toronto. As I mentioned this morning, Baltimore is on a roll and they’re in the process of meeting first Toronto and then Boston on the road. Could be a big week or so for them. Out west we have just as big a matchup in Seattle, where the Rangers take on the Mariners. Stay up late and watch it so you don’t have to play catchup at the end of the year when they’re involved in the most compelling division race and you need to pretend you know what you’re talking about.

Note: that last bit was me talking to myself more than any of you. What? I go to bed early. I’m old. Sue me.

Detroit Tigers (Mike Pelfrey) @ New York Yankees (CC Sabathia), 7:05 PM EDT, Yankee Stadium

Philadelphia Phillies (Jeremy Hellickson) @ Washington Nationals (Stephen Strasburg), 7:05 PM EDT, Nationals Park

St. Louis Cardinals (Michael Wacha) @ Pittsburgh Pirates (Gerrit Cole), 7:05 PM EDT, PNC Park

Baltimore Orioles (Kavin Gausman) @ Toronto Blue Jays (Marco Estrada), 7:07 PM EDT, Rogers Centre

Houston Astros (Lance McCullers) @ Tampa Bay Rays (Matt Andiese), 7:10 PM EDT, Tropicana Field

Oakland Athletics (Sonny Gray) @ Cincinnati Reds (Anthony DeSclafani), 7:10 PM EDT, Great American Ball Park

Chicago Cubs (Jason Hammel) @ Atlanta Braves (Bud Norris), 7:35 PM EDT, Turner Field

Boston Red Sox (Steven Wright) @ Minnesota Twins (Tyler Duffey), 8:10 PM EDT, Target Field

Kansas City Royals (Ian Kennedy) @ Chicago White Sox (Chris Sale), 8:10 PM EDT, U.S. Cellular Field

New York Mets (Matt Harvey) @ Milwaukee Brewers (Junior Guerra), 8:10 PM EDT, Miller Park

San Diego Padres (Andrew Cashner) @ Colorado Rockies (Jon Gray), 8:40 PM EDT, Coors Field

Miami Marlins (Justin Nicolino) @ Arizona Diamondbacks (Patrick Corbin), 9:40 PM EDT, Chase Field

Cleveland Indians (Corey Kluber) @ Los Angeles Angels (Hector Santiago), 10:05 PM EDT, Angel Stadium of Anaheim

Texas Rangers (Derek Holland) @ Seattle Mariners (Hisashi Iwakuma), 10:10 PM EDT, Safeco Field

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.