Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Hunter Strickland’s six-game suspension upheld

8 Comments

It took a while, but Major League Baseball has finally resolved Giants reliever Hunter Strickland‘s appeal of his six-game suspension: it’s still six games. MLB decided not to reduce Strickland’s punishment, which he’ll begin serving tonight, NBC Sports Bay Area’s Alex Pavlovic reports.

On May 29, Strickland intentionally hit Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper in the hip with a 98 MPH fastball, exacting revenge for playoff home runs Harper hit against Strickland in 2014. Harper wasn’t happy, so he went towards Strickland and the two fought briefly as the benches and bullpens emptied onto the field. Harper was suspended four games, which was eventually reduced to three games.

Strickland, 28, will take the rest of the week off carrying a 2.08 ERA and a 26/13 K/BB ratio in 26 innings.

Report: Major League Baseball bans transactions with Mexican League teams

Getty Images
7 Comments

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.