We’re only three weeks into the regular season, but Brewers center fielder Lorenzo Cain has already robbed batters of two home runs. He robbed José Martínez of a game-tying solo home run to end the Brewers’ Opening Day game against the Cardinals. Cain victimized the Cardinals again on Monday. The Cardinals were leading 2-0 with a runner on second base and two outs as Matt Carpenter came to the plate. After taking a first-pitch ball, Carpenter swatted a Freddy Peralta fastball to deep right-center. Just as he did on Opening Day, Cain ranged back the whole way as he approached the wall. He timed his leap and snagged a would-be home run, ending the inning.
This is Cain’s 10th season in the majors. He has yet to win a Gold Glove. I would imagine that changes in November.
The Brewers rallied for six runs in the bottom half of the second inning, punctuated by a Christian Yelich three-run home run that plated Cain.
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.
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.