MLB agrees to pay minor league players a stipend through May

It should be clear by the end of May whether professional baseball will be played at all this season. Until then, small leaguers will be paid.

Major League Baseball on Tuesday announced that a weekly stipend of $ 400 for minor league players has been extended through May 31. In the unlikely event that the season starts before then, salaries would replace the stipends.

The money is crucial for small leaguers, who are not paid out of season. Current minimum wages in the minor league range from $ 290 per week in rookie leagues, where the season lasts three months, to $ 502 per week in triple-A, where the season lasts five months.

Major League team owners, not minor league team owners, pay minor league players. In its announcement, MLB said it had suspended minor league contracts due to the national emergency declared by President Trump.

The league could have similarly suspended Major League contracts, but instead reached an agreement with the players’ union which, in the event of a canceled season, would earn players 4% of their 2020 salaries and most players a full year would provide service.

Minor league players are not represented by a union.

The suspension of minor league contracts was called a “procedural matter” by MLB because bans on large gatherings exclude minor league matches. But the agreement between Major League and minor league owners will expire this fall, and the requirement that MLB teams supply players to affiliated minor league teams.

MLB has said it wants to eliminate 42 minor league teams, thereby creating about 1,000 jobs for players. In agreement with the players’ union, MLB has obtained the right to shorten the draft in 2020 and 2021, so that there may be fewer players in the Major League teams to supply the minor league teams.

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