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BBWAA announces awards finalists

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The Baseball Writers Association of America announced on MLB Network the top three finalists for each league’s respective Rookie of the Year, Manager of the Year, Cy Young, and Most Valuable Player Awards.

Here they are. Remember that votes were turned in before the start of the playoffs.

Now for some stray thoughts. It’s weird not to see Clayton Kershaw‘s name in the top-three of the Cy Young balloting. He had a top-three finish in each of the past five seasons, but missed 12 starts with a back injury. Noah Syndergaard was arguably more deserving of a top-three spot than Lester or Scherzer. There’s also an argument to be made for Jose Fernandez’s inclusion. I’m also shocked that BBWAA voters didn’t push Orioles closer Zach Britton into the top-three, though not doing so was the right call. Will Trout be screwed out of yet another MVP Award?

The award winners schedule: Rawlings Gold Glove Awards (Nov. 8), Players Choice Awards (Nov. 9), Louisville Silver Slugger Awards (Nov. 10), Rookie of the Year Awards (Nov. 14), Manager of the Year Awards (Nov. 15), Cy Young Awards (Nov. 16), MVP Awards (Nov. 17), Esurance MLB Awards (Nov. 18).

Nationals’ major leaguers to continue offering financial assistance to minor leaguers

Sean Doolittle
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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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.