John R. Ellement of the Boston Globe reports that free agent pitcher Rich Hill and his wife Caitlin were arrested outside of Gillette Stadium on Saturday prior to the start of the Bills-Patriots game. Caitlin was repeatedly trying to enter the stadium with an oversized bag and refused to leave when Foxborough police ordered her.
Rich was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest as he attempted to stop police from putting his wife into the vehicle for booking. Caitlin was charged with disorderly conduct and trespassing. Their criminal charges were changed into civil infractions by the office of Norfolk D.A. Michael Morrissey. The felony charge of resisting arrest was dropped in the “interests of justice.”
As far as reasons for being arrested go, the Hills’ Saturday ranks pretty far down the list of grievous offenses. Stadium bag policies are mostly security theater anyway.
The 39-year-old lefty is a free agent, coming off an injury-shortened season with the Dodgers. He went 4-1 with a 2.45 ERA and a 72/18 K/BB ratio over 58 2/3 innings during the regular season. Hill pitched in one postseason game, starting Game 4 of the NLDS against the Nationals, a game the Dodgers lost 6-1.
Hill is expected to miss at least the first two months of the 2020 season as he underwent left elbow surgery in October. Given his age and health issues (he turns 40 in March), Hill will likely have to settle for a one-year contract if he intends to continue pitching.
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 have not withdrawn their generosity.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.