MLB Commissioner Suspends Minor-League Season, Will Pay Players Stipend


March 31, 2020

Minor leaguers faced enough uncertainty in their baseball careers before the coronavirus outbreak suspended spring training.

Tuesday, that only intensified.

Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred reportedly told league clubs that their season is officially suspended, but that minor leaguers will get a weekly stipend of $400 through at least May 31, per USA Today’s Bob Nightengale.

These teams typically begin their 140-game seasons in April.

?While I fully anticipate that baseball will resume this season, it is very difficult to predict with any accuracy the timeline for resumption of our season,” Manfred wrote in a letter to clubs. “And while I am confident that MLB ultimately will emerge from this crisis as strong as ever, we will face some significant economic challenges in the foreseeable future. Our clubs rely heavily on revenue from tickets/concessions, broadcasting/media, licensing and sponsorships to pay player salaries. In the absence of games, these revenue streams will be lost or substantially reduced, and clubs will not have sufficient funds to meet their financial obligations.

?I recognize the hardship that not receiving a paycheck will have on you and your families. For this reason, all MLB clubs have agreed to continue to pay players on Minor League UPCs (uniform player contracts) the sum of $400 per week through at least May 31, at which point we will reevaluate the circumstances.??

Nightengale notes that players will continue receiving benefits, but are ineligible to file for unemployment because they technically remain under contract. This effects players differently, with some Triple-A level veterans earning more than $10 thousand a month taking a significant pay cut and lower level athletes getting a raise with the stipend.

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