On Monday a reporter in the Dominican Republic claimed that Yordano Ventura was alive immediately after his automobile accident and that he was robbed as he lay dying. The report was given wide dissemination by Pedro Martinez, who tweeted about it. Today the Kansas City Star reports that this claim, never confirmed by authorities, is not true.
Ventura died instantly, the Star reports, relaying that the coroner who examined Ventura told the Royals that he died on impact. What’s more, several items of jewelry, collected from the scene of the accident, were given directly to Ventura’s family by officials. His World Series ring was not among the personal effects, but it was not known if he had the ring with him at the time of the accident. One suspects that the presence of a World Series ring was assumed and its absence formed the basis of the now refuted report.
Thank goodness the initial report was unfounded. It’s a bad enough world and a bad enough story without further ugliness adding to it.
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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.