Despite throwing five solid innings against the Reds on Sunday, manager Dave Roberts said that Kenta Maeda is moving back to the bullpen, Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times reports.
Maeda, 29, has had a tough season, carrying a 5.16 ERA through his 10th start. He then moved to the bullpen and picked up his first career save on June 9 against the Reds with four innings of one-run ball. Maeda moved back into the rotation to start Sunday as the Dodgers are in the midst of a long stretch of games without an off day. He fired five innings and gave up only one run to the Reds on Sunday, lowering his ERA to 4.70.
Given the injury propensity of most of the Dodgers’ current starters, it’s realistic to assume that Maeda will eventually move back into the rotation.
Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reports that Major League Baseball has banned all transactions with Liga Mexicana de Beisbol (LMB), popularly known as the Mexican League. As of now, all 30 teams are prohibited from signing players under contract with LMB teams. The ban was issued due to Major League Baseball’s contention that “corruption” and “fraud” run rampant in the player acquisition process.
Passan describes the issues in detail, and they sound pretty compelling. The upshot: LMB clubs — which have full control over their players — are taking advantage of them, taking most if not all of the signing bonuses MLB teams give them after negotiating for their rights. Mexican teams often sign players when they’re 15 years-old so that, once they are old enough for American teams to approach them, they’re in the position to take a usurious cut.
Passan says Major League Baseball is demanding greater transparency from LMB before it’s willing to lift the ban. He also says that the MLBPA is in “lockstep” with Major League Baseball on the matter, which makes sense given that, if MLB’s claims are accurate, players are being exploited here. He also says that if LMB does not change its ways, there is a “Plan B,” though it’s not clear what that is.
There aren’t a ton of Mexican players signed by MLB teams each year, but there are enough to make this a significant issue that is worth watching.