With a loss to the Tigers on Saturday, the Orioles lost their 100th game of the season. It’s their second consecutive season with triple-digit losses, and their third straight losing season. The Orioles are frustrating to watch if you’re a fan, but even broadcaster Gary Thorne sounds fed up with the lack of quality baseball.
In the first inning of Tuesday night’s game against the Blue Jays, Lourdes Gurriel Jr. hit a foul pop-up. Catcher Chance Sisco and third baseman Rio Ruiz converged on the ball. Ruiz did not call off Cisco. As a result, Cisco continued to pursue the pop-up but both players tried not to collide into each other and the ball dropped onto the ground, giving Gurriel new life.
Following the play, a frustrated Thorne said, “And there again, that can’t happen. 12 games left in the year and you still haven’t decided that a third baseman calls off the catcher? For the love of gracious, come on!”
Unfortunately, MLB.com doesn’t have video of the play (at least yet), but I clipped it:
I would also be frustrated if I had to spend two years of my life watching a fundamentally unsound team on a daily basis.
Even Drellich of The Athletic reports that the Boston Red Sox are cutting the pay of team employees. Those cuts, which began to be communicated last night, apply to all employees making $50,000 or more. They are tiered cuts, with people making $50-99,000 seeing salary cut by 20%, those making $100k-$499,000 seeing $25% cuts and those making $500,000 or more getting 30% cuts.
Drellich reported that a Red Sox employee told him that “people are livid” over the fact that those making $100K are being treated the same way as those making $500K. And, yes, that does seem to be a pretty wide spread for similar pay cuts. One would think that a team with as many analytically-oriented people on staff could perhaps break things down a bit more granularly.
Notable in all of this that the same folks who own the Red Sox — Fenway Sports Group — own Liverpool FC of the English Premier League, and that just last month Liverpool’s pay cut/employee furlough policies proved so unpopular that they led to a backlash and a subsequent reversal by the club. That came after intense criticism from Liverpool fan groups and local politicians. Sox owner John Henry must be confident that no such backlash will happen in Boston.
As we noted yesterday, The Kansas City Royals, who are not as financially successful as the Boston Red Sox, have not furloughed employees or cut pay as a result of baseball’s shutdown in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Perhaps someone in Boston could call the Royals and ask them how they managed that.