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Alliance of sports unions release a “Universal Declaration of Player Rights”

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Leaders from the NFL, NBA, NHL and Major League Baseball players associations are participating in the unveiling of a “Universal Declaration of Player Rights,” that is aimed at a new approach to governing sports and protecting athletes.

The release comes from the World Players Association, which is a federation of more than 100 unions representing athletes from around the world. Don Fehr of the NHL Players’ Association, Tony Clark of the Major League Baseball Players Association, DeMaurice Smith of the NFL Players Association and Michele Roberts of the National Basketball Players Association are part of the group.

The document contains 17 articles, including declaration of the right to unionize and collectively bargain, the right to express opinions freely and the right to receive equal pay for equal work. The stuff about the right to express opinions is, no doubt, at influenced by the pushback Colin Kaepernick and other NFL players have received after kneeling or sitting during the national anthem to protest racial inequality and police brutality. It seems apparent, in fact, that Kaepernick has been blackballed from the game for his role in beginning the protests.

You can see the Declaration in its entirety here.

 

Carlos Martínez to pitch out of bullpen upon return from injured list

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Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said pitcher Carlos Martínez will work out of the bullpen when he returns from the injured list, The Athletic’s Mark Saxon reports. Shildt noted that the decision is based on Martínez’s needs rather than the team’s needs, which suggests he may not yet have the strength to pitch as a starter.

Martínez, 27, opened the season on the injured list due to a right rotator cuff strain. The right-hander was also injured last year, battling lat and oblique injuries. He will go to extended spring training and likely begin a minor league rehab assignment next week. Based on that time frame, Martínez should be activated around mid-May.

Last year, Martínez made 18 starts and 15 relief appearances, posting a 3.11 ERA with five saves and a 117/60 K/BB ratio across 118 2/3 innings. It is unclear what role(s) Martínez will have in the bullpen, but he could eventually help set up for closer Jordan Hicks.