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Tigers shut down Michael Fulmer to work on mechanics

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Chris McCosky of The Detroit News reports that the Tigers have shut down starter Michael Fulmer indefinitely. Manager Ron Gardenhire said, “He took a step back to refine his lower-body mechanics. We have no timetable on when he’s going to get back on the mound.”

Fulmer, who turns 26 years old tomorrow, has logged eight innings this spring. He’s allowed seven runs (all earned) on 11 hits and four walks with six strikeouts. Fulmer, the 2016 AL Rookie of the Year Award winner, had his worst season as a major leaguer last season, finishing 3-12 with a 4.69 ERA and a 110/46 K/BB ratio in 132 1/3 innings.

On the bright side, it doesn’t seem like Fulmer is suffering from an injury. The right-hander underwent his third right knee surgery last September, repairing a torn meniscus.

At the moment, Daniel Norris seems like the top candidate to replace Fulmer in the rotation, but the club is also having Spencer Turnbull stretch out as a starter.

Nationals’ major leaguers to continue offering financial assistance to minor leaguers

Sean Doolittle
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On Sunday, we learned that while the Nationals would continue to pay their minor leaguers throughout the month of June, their weekly stipend would be lowered by 25 percent, from $400 to $300. In an incredible act of solidarity, Nationals reliever Sean Doolittle and his teammates put out a statement, saying they would be covering the missing $100 from the stipends.

After receiving some criticism, the Nationals reversed course, agreeing to pay their minor leaguers their full $400 weekly stipend.

Doolittle and co. have not withdrawn their generosity. On Wednesday, Doolittle released another statement, saying that he and his major league teammates would continue to offer financial assistance to Nationals minor leaguers through the non-profit organization More Than Baseball.

The full statement:

Washington Nationals players were excited to learn that our minor leaguers will continue receiving their full stipends. We are grateful that efforts have been made to restore their pay during these challenging times.

We remain committed to supporting them. Nationals players are partnering with More Than Baseball to contribute funds that will offer further assistance and financial support to any minor leaguers who were in the Nationals organization as of March 1.

We’ll continue to stand with them as we look forward to resuming our 2020 MLB season.

Kudos to Doolittle and the other Nationals continuing to offer a helping hand in a trying time. The players shouldn’t have to subsidize their employers’ labor expenses, but that is the world we live in today.