There was some good news for a few players who were non-roster invitees of the Blue Jays this spring, as the MLBPA will offer some financial support.
While Major League Baseball has been stuck in limbo for a few weeks now, several players have been wondering if and when their next cheque might show up. Thankfully, there were some answers on Friday.
The MLBPA announced that they will be activating a new players’ union assistance fund, which was approved on Friday by the association’s executive board. Under this new program, players who were invited to big league camp on non-guaranteed contracts will now receive at least some help while baseball is suspended, ranging anywhere from $5,000-50,000 depending on their service time.
Here’s the breakdown of how the payout system works:
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1 day- 1 year= $5,000
1-2 years= $7,500
2-3 years= $15,000
3-6 years= $25,000
6+ years= $50,000
The Blue Jays actually have 11 players who will fall into this new program, should they choose to apply. They had two veterans who would be eligible for the full amount in Marc Rzepczynski and Ruben Tejada, and Caleb Joseph, Jake Petricka, Justin Miller, and Ryan Dull fit into the second tier. After that, A.J. Cole is the lone player in the $15,000 tier, as is the case with Brian Moran at $7,500. Finally, Travis Bergen, Phillippe Aumont and Andy Burns can each apply in the first tier for five grand.
This assistance program has been set up for players just like the ones above, mostly of the fringe-MLBer variety. Some of these guys could have earned seven-figure guarantees if they had made a MLB roster, and the Player’s Association wants to make sure they’re at least a little bit taken care of.
As for Minor Leaguers, they’ve had their weekly payments extended until the end of May, and it’s hard to say if there will be more of a safety net in place for them if this suspension of play drags on, as it appears it will. I’m sure the player’s union will continue to work to get their members at least some compensation, and hopefully they don’t forget the “little guy” as it continues, which is part of why Friday’s announcement was a positive one.