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Pirates send prospect Shane Baz to the Rays to complete the Chris Archer trade

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When the Tampa Bay Rays sent starter Chris Archer to the Pittsburgh Pirates at the trade deadline they got back pitcher Tyler Glasnow, outfielder Austin Meadows and a player to be named later. Today that player was named: it’s pitching prospect Shane Baz. The completion of the deal was first reported by John Dreker of Pirates Prospects.

Baz, the Pirates top pick in the 2017 draft, is an excellent prospect, generally thought to be in the top-100 in all of baseball. He’s been at low-A Bristol this season, where he is 4-3 with a 3.97 ERA in ten starts with 54 strikeouts in 45.1 innings. Baz was just named Appalachian League pitcher of the week to boot after putting up two shutout appearances with outings of four and two-thirds and five scoreless on Monday and Saturday, respectively.

All in all that makes for an excellent haul for the Rays in the Archer deal. Which, given that Archer is under team control through the 2021 season, makes some sense.

Nationals back off of minor league stipend cut

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Yesterday it was reported that the Washington Nationals would cut the weekly stipend paid to their minor leaguers from $400 a week to $300 per week through the end of June.

For frame of reference, MLB had agreed to pay all minor leaguers $400 per week through May 31. Several teams have agreed to extend that, with the Royals and Twins agreeing to do it all the way through the end of August. The Oakland A’s decided to stop the payments in their entirety as of today. The Nationals were unique in cutting $100 off of the checks.

The A’s and the Nationals have taken a great amount of flak for what they’ve done. The Nats move was immediately countered by Nationals major league players announcing that they would cover what the organization would not.

The A’s are, apparently, still sticking to their plan. The Nats, however, have reversed course:

One can easily imagine a situation in which Nats ownership just decided, cold-heartedly, to lop that hundred bucks off of each minor league check and not worry about a moment longer. What’s harder to imagine is what seems to have actually happened: the Nats did it without realizing that anyone would take issue with it, were surprised by the blowback, and then reversed course. Like, what kind of a bubble where they living in that they did not think people would consider that a low-rent thing to do?

In any event, good move, Nats, even if I cannot even begin to comprehend your thought process.