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Nationals manager Martinez has heart procedure

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Dave Martinez will not manage the Nationals in St. Louis on Monday because he stayed in Washington to undergo a heart procedure.

Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo told the media that Martinez experienced chest pains during the team’s home game against Atlanta on Sunday. The manager left in the sixth inning and was taken to a hospital.

Martinez, 54, underwent a cardiac catheterization and will remain in the hospital undergoing tests. Rizzo said that Martinez was “upbeat” but that there was no timetable for his return.

Bench coach Chip Hale will manage the team Monday. He replaced Martinez on Sunday.

The Nationals currently own the first wild-card spot, 1.5 games ahead of the Chicago Cubs. This is a key three-game series against the NL Central-leading Cardinals.

Martinez is in his second season managing the Nationals. After winning 82 games last season, the Nats have matched that total this season with 14 games to play.

Martinez had a 16-year MLB career with nine teams.

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Dodgers to implement salary cuts to avoid furloughs or layoffs

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The Los Angeles Dodgers have informed their full-time employees that they will not impose furloughs or layoffs due to the coronavirus pandemic, but instead will begin a system of tiered salary cuts beginning on June 1, sources told ESPN.

The Associated Press has previously reported that the Dodgers are projected to lose $232 million this year, making them the second-hardest-hit team in the league behind the New York Yankees, who are projected to lose $312 million, due to the pandemic.

The Dodgers informed hundreds of their employees in a Zoom call Tuesday afternoon that the salary cuts — which will range from 0 to 35% or more for top executives — are being made to save jobs and prevent furloughs, sources said. Employees were told salary reductions will affect only full-time employees making over $75,000 a year.

Most of baseball’s 30 teams have pledged to pay their full-time employees through the end of May. But that commitment has softened as the shutdown has continued.

ESPN’s Alden Gonzalez reported Tuesday that the Oakland Athletics will furlough almost all of their amateur and professional scouts and about three-quarters of their player development employees. That’s on par with the furloughs announced by Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on May 19, in their player development and scouting departments, as well as minor league staff beginning in June.

The Miami Marlins, Cincinnati Reds, Tampa Bay Rays and A’s had previously announced they would implement furloughs and/or layoffs.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has said baseball will lose $4 billion in revenue this season, and he has given the teams permission to cut payroll.

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Sources — Athletics to have furloughs, salary cuts

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The Oakland Athletics, feeling the financial crunch of a 2020 season that has yet to get off the ground, have implemented a system of furloughs and salary reductions that will impact the majority of their baseball-operations department, sources told ESPN on Tuesday.

Professional scouts will be furloughed next week and amateur scouts will be furloughed shortly after the June 10-11 draft. In addition, about three-quarters of the A’s player-development staff is believed to be bracing for furloughs, which typically run through the end of October, industry sources said. Layoffs have not been implemented, but baseball-operations employees who were not furloughed will face pay reductions.

The A’s, who are reportedly past due on the annual $1.2 million rent payment for their stadium, joined the Los Angeles Angels and the Miami Marlins among teams that have instituted wide-ranging furloughs as a cost-cutting measure amid the financial difficulties caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The Los Angeles Dodgers, however, will instead implement a system of tiered salary cuts for those making more than $75,000, sources told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne.

Major League Baseball presented its first economic proposal to the MLB Players Association on Tuesday, marking the beginning of what is expected to be a prolonged, contentious negotiation. The hope is that both sides can come to an agreement so that the regular season can begin in early July, though games will be played without fans.

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Key takeaways from MLB’s initial economic proposal to re-start 2020 season

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Team owners in Major League Baseball have reportedly made their long-anticipated initial proposal to the MLB Players Association about what the players could make during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. Working from what details have come out from sources, we look at the key takeaways from what we’re hearing about the proposal so far.

What would make a sliding scale be more appealing to players than a revenue split?

For one, it protects them against a shutdown due to a second wave of COVID-19, perhaps during the playoffs, when television revenues are at its peak. Plus, the lower-paid players wouldn’t feel the further hit on their salary as much, thanks to the sliding scale. Already, one lesser paid player thought he’d only lose about $100,000-$150,000 compared to the uncertainty of sharing revenues.

Why would MLB’s highest-paid players be willing to agree to a deal that costs them more than others?

There’s a good chance they won’t but if they did it would be because a player who was going to make $20 million would still make about $6.5 million this season while also protecting the lower-paid players. But this offer has a real chance to divide players unless a better solution is presented. The top earners are in a sort of Catch-22. Many probably have enough money to survive without playing this season but $6.5 million is still $6.5 million.

How much more likely does this proposal make the players to agree to a deal?

One player said it’s already ‘much better’ than any revenue-sharing split but that doesn’t make it likely they’ll accept. Players already believe they agreed to a prorated salary structure so selling them on taking even less won’t be easy. Just easier than a revenue-sharing proposal. The good news is the owners have shown some willingness to negotiate but, in fact, this is their first real proposal. Revenue sharing was a trial balloon which popped upon leaking to the media.

Where do talks go next from here?

The union is likely to respond, perhaps with their own plan, which might include full prorated salaries but with deferments. Behind the scenes, many players and agents find this idea intriguing, knowing revenues will return in coming years, and full value of current contracts can be paid. Another option is to offer a straight cut across the board — say 10 percent — instead of a sliding scale. The hit wouldn’t be horrendous for any one player but would the owners accept? It won’t save them as much as their current proposal.

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