Sunday, May 31, 2020


I am sitting here shaking my head at the ridiculous greed I see around me through the eyes of ugly baseball players amidst COVID-19.  I am sure you have had your fill of Tampa Bay pitcher Blake Snell, but his quote back in early May just won't go away.

"For me to take a pay cut is not happening, because the risk is through the roof... it's a shorter season, less pay… I gotta get my money," said Snell. Max Scherzer was also vocal this week on Twitter, saying. "no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions." 

On Friday, the CEO of my company could barely choke back tears as he described the process a front-line healthcare worker goes through following a shift at the hospital in order to keep his family safe.  He changes and hoses off in the backyard in order to avoid any sort of contact between himself and his family following a day's work. This is an additional process ontop of his extended hours trying to keep his patients alive. Yet, here we are waiting for the go-ahead to "play ball" and maybe some respite for this healthcare worker and his family, watching their favorite baseball team. Instead, today's players are worried about getting their full pay for playing likely half of a regular season.  It is really very simple, no prorated pay, no baseball in 2020. I don't know any way else to say it.


"This is the sport that wants us all to believe it is still our national pastime. But right now, it is letting the nation down, unable even in this time of crisis to keep its ugliest squabbles private, a new load of dirty laundry leaked to the public daily. Players on one side, owners on the other, a deep divide in between about how, or even if, baseball will return to the field," wrote The Boston Globe on Saturday.

Source: Twitter

The coronavirus has caused many to lose their jobs, receive pay cuts, and alter their ways of working. Blue-collar as well as white-collar workers across the country are experiencing the worst case of unemployment ever. And baseball players want what's "owed" to them. How can owners pay full price when no fans can attend games until maybe this fall and baseball revenues are plummeting or nonexistent?

Every part of today's economy is taking a hit. From restaurants to small businesses and Fortune 500 companies to universities. What makes baseball players think they are exempt?

As stated eloquently in The Globe, "There are pathways to compromise — the work being done by the NHL and its convoluted playoff plan, by the NBA and its plans that put an emphasis on player safety, by the NFL and its unbridled optimism as it targets a full fall return, all of it fosters hope our beloved sports distraction may again return. Baseball, as usual, didn’t get the memo, continuing instead to stumble over itself with the same graceless selfishness that has come to define the sport since, oh, around 1994." That's of course when the strike happened and the rest of the season was canceled including the World Series.

I am the biggest baseball fan I know.  I love the game, not just the Yankees.  This all makes me extremely sad. Why can't the players shift their mindset to one that wants to make a greater impact? Country Music Artists Thomas Rhett and Friends sum this sentiment up in their newly released single "Be A Light."

"In a world full of hate, be a light
When you do somebody wrong, make it right
Don't hide in the dark, you were born to shine
In a world full of hate, be a light

Here is the perfect opportunity for baseball to be a light and provide some joy during these unprecedented times, once again proving it is America's pastime.  Instead, baseball players represented by their agents and union are acting with one mindset: WIIFM- What's In It For Me?!

Between the greed, the cheating, and exorbitant ticket prices, baseball is as far from an affordable day at the beach on a nice summer afternoon than it is close to a multi-million dollar mansion on a secluded overlook.

Source: Orange County Register

Overall, there is just a lack of empathy which in this day and age coupled with critical thinking, is the number one skill needed to combat today's challenges and make a better tomorrow.  I hope that this is a wake-up call to players and owners alike.  Safety is number 1. Precision and best practice are two and three. Salary is way down the bottom.

Bring back baseball and make a greater impact.  Bring joy, not greed.  Bring back the sport, the thrills, the competition, and a little bit of normalcy to our lives.  Summer without baseball is just unacceptable when there is an alternative.

--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof


Life takes crazy turns sometimes.  When Shaun Clancy of Foley's in New York City announced Friday that they were closing up shop because of the Coronavirus, it was pretty much devastating to everyone in New York or anyone that loves baseball.  In fact, I mentioned Pete Caldera in my article, our bud over there at the Bergen Record. He was one of the guys that was a true bro of Shaun's, and wrote this just a few hours after the announcement...

"...Foley’s could not survive the COVID-19 crisis, and now it goes the way of Toots Shor’s and Runyons, the legendary New York places where sports figures and celebrities mingled with fans and tipplers. I was lucky, so lucky, to be in that sphere. Luckier still that Shaun Clancy is my friend. "

The truth is, everyone that walked into that bar felt like Shaun was their friend. It just goes to show that while Pete was a true friend, Shaun's friendly nature, the atmosphere of Foley's really sucked you in.  My buddy Joey Moses from Australia sent me this. And it just goes to show how everyone went to Foley's because it was the most fun place on earth...

Photo Credit: Joey Moses

Just read your article, can’t believe Foley's is going! It was probably my favourite joint in NYC. I remember going there for the first time in 2007 with one of my friends, and all I could think about was how awesome this place would be to come back with my dad. Then when dad and I eventually did come back in 2012. We met you person on that trip, remember? On that vacation I knew Foley's had to be the first place I took him to. And then I wanted to make sure he went to Mickey Mantle's across from Central Park too. He loved it! Was such an amazing vibe at Foley's. I still can’t believe it won’t be there anymore.


Photo Credit: Joey Moses / Photo of Charles Moses
Joey's dad is Charles Moses, and both of them are friends for life, all because of Bleeding Yankee Blue, a place where people can read about the Yankees and become part of our family and a place where conversations can be had about our greatest spots in New York... Foley's of course being one of them. Sad. Sad day.

Everyone wants to jump in and help keep Foley's open. But Foley's put this out last night:

No one likes the end... but that's life. People die, people are born. Places close and new places open. Evolution.

Sorry Joey. Next time you come to NYC, we'll find a new spot to call our own.

Saturday, May 30, 2020


I've never been a fan of David Price. I don't know why, but I am always thrilled when the Yankees beat up on him.  He's a good pitcher, probably a great teammate, but I just think that when it comes to his competitive nature, it makes me want to have my team compete harder against him. That works for him as a pitcher. That works for me as a fan. Hey... maybe we have more in common than I thought.

That being said, he's about to do something big, and I applaud him and I really hope other major league baseball players follow and do the same. Bottom line, let's get these young players back on their feet.  It's something that Slade Heathcott has been screaming about for a few years now with, and something that really needs to happen. Maybe this dark situation for the MiLB will make others take notice and change the way these players are treated. Anyway, kudos to David Price. Check this out:

ESPN writes:

"The All-Star left-hander will give each minor league player who is not on the Dodgers' 40-man roster $1,000 for the month of June, sources confirmed to ESPN. The act of generosity will impact just over 200 people facing unprecedented difficulty during the coronavirus pandemic."

If you don't know, the minor leaguers in the MLB have been pretty much hosed.  Read MINOR LEAGUE BASEBALL CUTS HUNDREDS for more on that.  And if you don't realize... this latest tragedy among the minor leaguers, while the biggest one, has been part of a downward trend of abuse of minor leaguers for years. Bottom line is Minor League Players are not treated well. They are treated horribly all because these major league clubs know these players have a dream to play in the MLB and will pretty much drag them through the mud because they know these young MiLB players will keep coming back... NO MATTER WHAT. It's bad.

Slade Heathcott spoke with BYB about this recently. Minor leaguers don't get their due and they need to. Check this out:

"Slade Heathcott: Do you know how much a 6 year guy gets paid as a minor leaguer? Today’s estimate is $12,000. That’s less than a hot dog vendor at that player’s major league stadium. I want you to think about that. How do you live on that? You don’t. It’s not enough for training. It’s not enough for good food. 

Casey: Are you kidding me? 

Slade: No man! Let’s not forget that minor league baseball players are athletes. They are the farm team of the Bigs. Without feeding and helping to protect these minor leaguers correctly, you end up with a lot of broken down minor leaguers that just don’t survive in the game or never make it to the pros. 

Casey: But how long has this been going on and what can be done about it? 

Slade: We decided to put together More Than Baseball. The goal is to find a way to get all 30 Major League teams together to be able to raise money to help minor league players. Enough with the friction between players and owners and enough with controversy. The goal should be to get these teams help, through community, through fundraising, be it affiliates or otherwise to improve the lives of minor leaguers. 

Check out"


Enough is enough.

I hope guys like David Price and Slade Heathcott open the eyes of more players. I hope donations pour in. I hope more pro athletes help. I wish we could help.  We need to make a change.  These players have dreams... we need to help them get there.

Enjoy your Saturday. Do something great from someone in need today.

Friday, May 29, 2020


"Foley's was always about the people!" 
--Shaun Clancy

There's no other way to say this, I'm devastated and if you've been there, you should be too.

Foley's in New York City is closing due to this horrendous pandemic. Shaun Clancy just made the announcement on Twitter.

This is difficult. Shaun is one of the good ones. Over the past 10 years we here at Bleeding Yankee Blue would write about Foley's. I'd visit Foley's.

Hell, Pete Caldera of the Bergen Record and most of the Yankee beat writers, not to mention the true Yankee fans, would all go to Foley's.  It is literally one of my favorite bars in New York City.  We even interviewed Shaun here at BYB.  September 8, 2015.  Read FOLEY'S NY'S SHAUN CLANCY & A CHANCE TO MEET THE POPE.

Shaun was great then, he's great now, and if there is anyone out there with any ideas on how to keep Foley's alive, we need to try and help! I mean this!  They have some of the greatest workers over there, good people, hard working folks.  I'm just heartbroken.

Shaun, I want to chat with you today. If you see this, DM me on Twitter. We'll set up a call.

Horrible news. So sad about this and all that has happened with this country the past few months.


Before COVID-19 hit, the Yankees were set to dominate the 2020 season as one of the favorites to make it to the World Series. Now we don't know when baseball is going to start or if it will ever start. We just know that there are plans being put in place to try and make it happen.

The MLB and the MLBPA have put together a 67-page health proposal that covers limiting the number of players in a dugout to no spitting being allowed. Another issue being faced is pay cuts.

Everyone involved with baseball is losing money this season: owners, players, businesses, employees, etc... This is turning out to be hard to negotiate as players and owners can't agree on what they should get paid. I can understand wanting to get paid for your job, but most of these players would still be getting millions of dollars for only playing a part of the season.

Here are what the players would make after the pay cut:

These players will be making less than a quarter on their original agreement, yet are only playing on a proposed 82 game slate. On the other hand, these players are now risking a lot more. They are risking getting sick and have to stay away from their families in order to play. Players are most likely going to get the virus between being in the clubhouse, buses, and planes where social distancing will be difficult.

The league has already determined that if a player does test positive, they will not shut down the team unless it is a larger percentage of the team that also test positive. The player will then be allowed to rejoin the team after testing negative twice in a 24-hour period, rather than quarantining for 2 weeks.

What do you think? Is the pay cut fair with of the risk of COVID?

--Missy O'Rourke
BYB Contributor
Twitter: @missy_orourke


COVID-19 has halted nearly every aspect of American society, including major league baseball. Fortunately, the MLB plans to start the 2020 season on July 4, just in time to celebrate Independence Day. With this year's pandemic nearing its decline, let's look back at the history of baseball and the coronavirus.

Though MLB players began their spring training in early February, the World Health Organization (WHO) raised the global threat level for COVID-19 to "very high" just a few weeks later. This level set the COVID threat equal to that in mainland China, where the virus originated. While the MLB intended to start this year's season on March 26, the league faced several pushbacks as the pandemic spread.

These delays started after U.S. states started banning large group gatherings in response to the pandemic. They also came after the NBA, NHL, and MLS suspended their leagues. Pretty soon, the MLB suspended their spring training camps, and major league players were given a chance to return home. However, the Yankees unanimously decided to stay at their spring training facility, hoping to prepare themselves to seize their opportunity at the World Series title. The delays only continued after a minor league player for the Yankees tested positive for the coronavirus in March, becoming the first MLB player diagnosed with COVID-19.

At the same time, the WHO confirmed the 1,000th case of the virus in the U.S. A few days later, another minor leaguer in the Yankees was diagnosed with coronavirus. After the Reds quarantined their players after an employee tested positive for the virus, the MLB considered skipping their 2020 draft. After the Red Sox announced one of their minor league players tested positive for COVID-19, the MLB pushed the Draft back to July.

And it's not just MLB, it's youth baseball, it's World Baseball. In fact, we haven't seen something this significant and destructive in world and baseball since the Spanish Flu in 1918.  It was then that the Spanish flu pandemic infected an estimated 500 million people worldwide. Ballplayers played in masks... but they played... eventually.

According to Patrick Rishe, director of the sports business program at Washington University in St. Louis, the MLB has lost roughly $75 million a day thanks to the coronavirus. As a result, the MLB has considered a half-season with extended playoffs, which adds up to 1,200 games across the country. While the MLB took precautionary measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19, they not only failed to do so, they increased the risk of spreading the virus.

Based on reports from ESPN, the MLB only made "frequent," and not daily tests for the coronavirus and only quarantined individuals that tested positive. Despite their failings, the MLB has been motivated to reopen their league slowly but carefully. Even though the players are unable to play for the fans in live action, they are still connecting and communicating with them online in a variety of ways.

Players have provided tips for getting through the pandemic, the Dodgers hosted a Zoom party for about 15,000 people, and the MLB started airing live video game matchups on Twitch in an MLB The Show Players League.

If the MLB does manage to begin their season in July, it will be the breath of fresh air the country desperately needs to get through the Summer, despite the setbacks of minor league cuts and major leaguers needing to take a pay cut. The bottom line is baseball's return will be another massive step towards returning to normality.

--Anthony Orlando
BYB Contributor
Twitter: @landi52orlando

Thursday, May 28, 2020


It's a dark time in baseball, and today just became worse. It was announced that hundreds of players in the minor leagues were cut Thursday. There are also hundreds expected to lose their jobs. All because of COVID-19 and how baseball is dealing with this crisis. There's no question though, it looks like the minor league season will be canceled. What a mess.

It started out that these players would get something, but as time went on, MLB teams appeared to have started to turn their backs.

ESPN writes:

"All teams agreed to pay minor league players $400 a week in April and May to cover for wages lost during canceled games. The $400 salary was given by MLB regardless of what the players were supposed to make, including to hundreds of players who had been contracted to make several times that amount. For some players, that meant a pay cut of more than 80%. Early this week, the Oakland A's told their minor league players they would no longer receive the stipend starting in June, drawing significant criticism."

What does it mean going forward? We'll keep an eye on it, because personally, it's a terrible time and you have to feel real bad for all these young players.


Baseball is already a "GO".... just not here. The Korea Baseball Organization (KBO) has been playing games, and on Monday Japan's Nippon Professional Baseball (NPB) will kick off its regular season on June 19th. Games will be played without fans in attendance, but even in a condensed season they are preparing to play 120 games out of the normal 143-game norm. It's encouraging for MLB fans to see that logistically it IS possible for baseball to return. Now if we could just figure out the financial parts of this we'd all be happy....but it's not sounding good.

Even outside of baseball, other sports have resumed or they are in the planning stages and we should be much further along. NASCAR is already back in action. The PGA Tour will be back in two weeks. The NBA is working on a July return, likely in Florida. Tuesday afternoon the NHL announced the leagues plan to get back to playing. The regular season is over but playoffs will begin likely in July and may be hosted in two different cities. Sports are on the comeback, just not baseball. The union and owners are still striking out in negotiations....and it is driving us all crazy!

On Tuesday, owners gave the players union their latest proposal on player salary. No more 50-50 revenue sharing plan that prorated salaries based on the number of games played, now owners propose a pay scale where the higher paid players will take a bigger salary cut and lower paid players will not take the same salary hit. That's a much better deal for maybe younger players, or those who earn closer to league minimum but big stars like Gerrit Cole for example, take a huge hit. ESPN gave a good breakdown on the salary scale HERE.

So we can probably all guess that this new proposal didn't go over well. In fact, two players tweeted about it and MLBPA executive director Tony Clark immediately shot down the proposal calling it a salary cap.

Brett Anderson isn't saying anything we've already talked about on BYB but Marcus Stroman's tweet hits me the hardest. We've all known this salary feud was going to be a challenge, but we have all been clinging on to hope. Blake Snell already said he was going to plan for 2021, and now Stroman says the 2020 season isn't looking promising and that he was going to look at "life after baseball" projects.

Players are balking and the more we see it on social media the more I wonder if 2020 will be a lost season.

I really hope that's not the case. If all of these other sports are playing and baseball isn't then shame on BOTH PLAYERS AND OWNERS. There has to be concessions on both sides. Why not consider a deferred compensation program? Seriously, it could work and it sounds like the players union will counter this in the coming days.

Here's the basic idea behind it....I'm not an expert but something along these lines might work.
I mentioned above that Gerrit Cole would one of the players that would lose the most amount of money under the owners new pay scale proposal.

He's owed $36 million in 2020. Instead of the 20% payment that the owners proposed, take a large chunk of the funds owed to him for this season and tack them on to the back of his contract.

Do I like the idea of paying Cole a lot more money later when he well past his prime (assuming he doesn't opt out)? No. However, this allows the owners not to pay a lot of money in 2020 where they will be losing a lot of revenue and pay it later. The players still get all of the money owed to them and owners have time to make some money back and pay it in the future. Players get paid their full contracted amount eventually and owners may not lose up to $4 billion in one season as Rob Manfred estimated last week.

Is it a perfect solution? No, but it might make the players a little bit happier in the long run and we could get baseball back sooner. Time is of the essence here....if baseball is going to start in July after a 3 week training camp a compromise needs to get done in the next few days.

If the 2020 season doesn't happen BOTH sides are to blame. I get it billionaires and millionaires don't want to listen to each other talk about money.....but neither do all of us. It's not a good look for baseball.

--Jeana Bellezza-Ochoa
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @nyprincessj 

Wednesday, May 27, 2020


Source: Charles Wenzelberg/New York Post

I will be the first to say that I was skeptical of Aaron Boone as a manager for the most celebrated team in baseball. But the deck he has been dealt over the last three seasons, including this one has been challenging to say the least. And as Boone enters the last guaranteed year of his initial contract with the Yankees, this one could be the most difficult of them all.

Source: ESPN

“Our job is to get ready to go win a championship,’’ Boone said before spring training was shut down. “We don’t feel like anyone should be able to get in our way,” reported the New York Post.  But with a shortened schedule and teams like the Tampa Bay Rays who like to play spoilers, nothing is going to be smooth sailing for Boone and the Bombers.

Source: ABC 7

His first year of managerial service saw Boone filling the big shoes of Joe Girardi and establishing his leadership style and niche.  In the second year, Boone dealt with injury after injury in his players, forcing him to be a more creative manager.  Both years, he felt short of the Series. Now this year with a proposed 82-game schedule, Boone has a lot to prove in a short amount of time. Not to mention he now will deal with social distancing, additional safety precautions, and likely little to no fan support.

Source: USA Today

At this point, Boone and the rest of the Yankees likely just want to get started and see what they can do.  Having healthy players is a plus and if all goes according to plan, the Yankees will be at first pitch in the 2020 World Series with Boone at the helm.

--Suzie Pinstripe
BYB Managing Editor
Twitter: @suzieprof

Tuesday, May 26, 2020


This is just a quick note, but an amazing one.  Mariano Rivera speaks to the camera and shows us all how to throw his cutter.  He teaches,  he shows you the baseball, he traced his fingers onto the baseball so you can see how he does it. This is outstanding and kudos to @pitchersnation. Love every minute of this!

View this post on Instagram

A post shared by Pitchersnation (@pitchersnation) on

Try it!


I'm a big fan of Empire Sports Media, I read them a lot, but I don't agree with the notion that Alex Rodriguez is possibly considering a comeback. In fact, if anything, the guy just wants to be loved.

Putting this on Instagram on May 20th, it caused quite a stir:

And I guess that's why ESM, much like any smart publication, made a story out of it.

"Rodriguez could be considering a come back to baseball, but who knows if it is as a player. He recently posted a video in the batting cage with cryptic wording, stating that baseball was his first love... 

The hashtags in the post are the real identifiers, as he finished his career with 696 home runs, just four shy of being the fourth player in MLB history to reach 700 homers."

But here's the reality... and even ESM agrees with this...  Alex Rodriguez is done as a baseball player, but thinking about it can be fun.

Alex has a great broadcasting gig. He gets to watch him family grow with Jennifer Lopez... he can continue to repair his relationship with all the fans that watched him for years and hated him, either because he was real good, or just not good at the right time. OR... because he used PEDs.  Whatever it is, he is now no longer under a microscope like during his baseball days and he can work on getting better attention and being loved.  And trust me.... that's all this guy ever wanted anyway.

And speaking of attention, can someone please tell Alex to cover him mouth AND nose?

He's doing it wrong.

Nice work peaking my interest Alex Wilson and ESM!
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