The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Dodgers’ David Price to reportedly pay team’s minor leaguers $1,000 each in June

Acquired by the Dodgers this offseason, David Price is making a positive impact without having played a game for his new team. (Kathy Willens/AP)
Placeholder while article actions load

David Price has yet to play a game for the Dodgers, but that hasn’t stopped the left-handed pitcher from bringing his best stuff to his new home in Los Angeles.

Price will donate $1,000 to each Dodgers minor league player who is not on the team’s 40-man roster in June as an act of assistance during the novel coronavirus pandemic. The five-time all-star, who was acquired from the Boston Red Sox with all-star right fielder Mookie Betts in a blockbuster trade in February, has earned more than $184 million over his 12-year career, per Spotrac. Price is in the fifth year of a seven-year, $217 million deal he signed with the Red Sox in 2016.

The 2012 American League Cy Young winner with the Tampa Bay Rays reportedly asked the Dodgers not to publicize his act of generosity to the more than 200 players, but one of the beneficiaries chose to make the news public.

Price’s magnanimity comes in the wake of Major League Baseball teams making wide-ranging financial decisions for their big league operations as well as their developmental systems.

Last month, Forbes listed the Dodgers as the second-most-valuable team in baseball, with an estimated value of $3.4 billion. The Associated Press reported the franchise is slated to lose $232 million in 2020 if MLB plays a season with no fans, the second-highest projected loss behind the New York Yankees.

The Dodgers announced Tuesday that they would be implementing pay cuts, with the biggest percentage of salary reductions slated for the highest-paid employees. “This plan allows us to avoid organization-wide furloughs and to preserve hundreds of jobs,” their statement read.

Minor leagues have major issues, and baseball’s future will feel the impact

Minor league teams and players have been impacted heavily by the pandemic. Players in the rookie level receive less than $300 per week for a three-month season, while those in Class AAA earn about $500 per week over a five-month campaign. In March, Major League Baseball agreed to pay its minor league players a $400-per-week stipend through Sunday, leaving the decision to pay those players beyond that point up to the clubs.

Hundreds of minor leaguers have been released this week, with more cuts expected to come as the prospect of no minor league baseball being played in 2020 becomes more likely, according to ESPN.

The Dodgers committed to paying their players in the United States and their developmental academy in the Dominican Republic through June. The Minnesota Twins opted to not make any cuts and will pay their players through the remainder of the season. The Cincinnati Reds will pay their players through Sept. 7, which is when the minor league season was scheduled to end. On Friday, the same day they announced the release of 22 minor leaguers, reports surfaced that the Red Sox would pay the remaining players through August. The Houston Astros and Miami Marlins will do the same. The Seattle Mariners reportedly released 30 players but will pay those still employed through the rest of the season.

The Oakland Athletics, on the other hand, will not pay their minor league players for the remainder of the season, starting Monday.

Read more baseball from The Post:

As MLB awaits union response, players remain clear on one thing: No more pay cuts

Korean baseball league halts plan to return fans to stands amid coronavirus spike

Nationals’ Max Scherzer signals union’s rejection of MLB’s proposed salary cuts

Time working against MLB union as it contemplates critical next step to save 2020 season