Good morning, Athletics Nation!
The latest annual event to be canceled for 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic is the Little League World Series. It’s held each year in mid-August, but Little League International has already made the decision to call it off for this summer in the interest of everyone’s health. This is the first time the LLWS has been canceled in its history, dating back to 1947; this would have been the 74th edition.
In other news regarding amateur baseball, MLB and the Players Association are negotiating over what the 2020 draft will look like. In a report from Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich of The Athletic (see link below), the league’s latest proposal included a draft that would last 10 rounds, with various restrictions on spending. Talks are ongoing, but the number of rounds won’t drop below five, per a previous agreement between the two sides. In normal years, the draft lasts 40 rounds.
But even with the draft still expected to be held in June, will there be a minor league season at all? Our friend Bill from Athletics Farm takes a look at that question, as despite the lack of any official announcement yet, there is growing evidence that it won’t be feasible to hold minor league ball in the current environment. There can still be ways to get prospects into game action this summer, but it isn’t likely to come in the usual form nor in front of any fans.
Stay safe and enjoy today’s links!
- Seamheads podcast: Guest is pitching coach Scott Emerson (Apple) | Spotify | Stitcher
- Brazil: Matt Olson Q&A: A’s slugger working on special project in quarantine
- Kurkjian: Rickey Henderson, ‘I am the greatest of all time’ and the speech he was supposed to read
- Conniff: The $100,000 Infield of 1910 – 1914
- Hickey: Athletics Could Hold Their Own in a Revamped West Division
- Hickey: Will Manny Ramirez Get on a Baseball Field Before Athletics do?
- Hall: Today in Oakland A’s history (4/30): Ace Parker, two-sport athlete
MLB News & Interest:
- Little League Cancels 2020 World Series and Region Tournaments
- Nightengale: MLB expects to use home ballparks for spring training if plans to play season proceed
- Rosenthal and Drellich: MLBPA rejects MLB proposal for the 2020 amateur draft ($$$)
- AP: Andre Dawson has seen the impact of coronavirus as a mortician
- Justice: These are the best ‘Scottie Pippens’ in MLB history
- Castrovince: Odd, but not out: Baseball’s most bizarre rule
- MLB Quiz of the Day: Other side of historic moments
- Today in Baseball History
Best of Twitter:
Slusser clears up a question about ticket refunds
For those asking about the A’s email to season ticket holders yesterday - there is no punitive action should you seek a refund. Anyone who gets a 2021 package at ANY time, including later in the year, gets all the benefits, retains status etc, even if they get a refund now.— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) April 30, 2020
Those who ask for credit toward 2021 package rather than a refund now just get those benefits immediately, and 5 percent discount on the plan. There is NO loss of status for any potential new stadium seating options down the line.— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) April 30, 2020
To sum up: the priority status etc is tied to purchasing the following year’s package, as is always the case. This just locks that in earlier; usually next year’s package isn’t on the radar quite yet. The phrasing was a little confusing but that’s the upshot.— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) April 30, 2020
Byrnes catches more fly balls by 9 a.m. than most people catch all day