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Mike Foltynewicz loses arbitration hearing against Braves

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Right-hander Mike Foltynewicz lost his arbitration case against the Braves, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Saturday. Foltynewicz filed at $2.3 million and was met with a counteroffer of $2.2 million from the team.

This was Foltynewicz’s first year of arbitration eligibility. He’ll remain under team control through 2020 before entering free agency in 2021. The 26-year-old righty is coming off of his fourth year with Atlanta; he went 10-13 in 28 starts with a 4.79 ERA, 3.4 BB/9 and 8.4 SO/9 through 154 innings in 2017.

The Braves have now settled with all six of their arbitration-eligible players for the 2018 season, including right-handers Arodys Vizcaino ($3.4 million), Chase Whitley ($800,000) and Daniel Winkler ($610,000) and left-handers Rex Brothers ($1.1 million) and Sam Freeman ($1.075 million).

Max Scherzer: ‘There’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions’

Max Scherzer
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MLBPA player representative Max Scherzer sent out a short statement late Wednesday night regarding the ongoing negotiations between the owners and the union. On Tuesday, ownership proposed a “sliding scale” salary structure on top of the prorated pay cuts the players already agreed to back in March. The union rejected the proposal, with many worrying that it would drive a wedge in the union’s constituency.

Scherzer is one of eight players on the MLBPA executive subcommittee along with Andrew Miller, Daniel Murphy, Elvis Andrus, Cory Gearrin, Chris Iannetta, James Paxton, and Collin McHugh.

Scherzer’s statement:

After discussing the latest developments with the rest of the players there’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions. We have previously negotiated a pay cut in the version of prorated salaries, and there’s no justification to accept a 2nd pay cut based upon the current information the union has received. I’m glad to hear other players voicing the same viewpoint and believe MLB’s economic strategy would completely change if all documentation were to become public information.

Indeed, aside from the Braves, every other teams’ books are closed, so there has been no way to fact-check any of the owners’ claims. Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts, for example, recently said that 70 percent of the Cubs’ revenues come from “gameday operations” (ticket sales, concessions, etc.). But it went unsubstantiated because the Cubs’ books are closed. The league has only acknowledged some of the union’s many requests for documentation. Without supporting evidence, Ricketts’ claim, like countless others from team executives, can only be taken as an attempt to manipulate public sentiment.

Early Thursday morning, ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that the MLBPA plans to offer a counter-proposal to MLB in which the union would suggest a season of more than 100 games and fully guaranteed prorated salaries. It seems like the two sides are quite far apart, so it may take longer than expected for them to reach an agreement.