Nationals to Pay Minor League Players Through June After Sean Doolittle's Tweet

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistJune 1, 2020

Washington Nationals pitcher Sean Doolittle looks back as he exits the game during the fifth inning of a spring training baseball game against the New York Yankees, Thursday, March 12, 2020, in West Palm Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
Julio Cortez/Associated Press

The Washington Nationals will pay their minor league players $400 per week through the month of June after previously saying they would cut the stipend to $300 per week.

"Upon further internal discussion, you will receive your full stipend of $400 per week through the month of June. We will consider future payments on a month to month basis. Thank you!" a text message sent from the Nationals to minor league players read, per the Associated Press (via ESPN).

The Nationals' decision came a day after reliever Sean Doolittle said the team's major league players were planning to cover the $100-per-week reduction in pay. 

"All of us were minor leaguers at one point in our careers and we know how important the weekly stipends are for them and their families during these uncertain times," Doolittle wrote in a tweet. "Minor leaguers are an essential part of our organization and they are bearing the heaviest burden of this situation as their season is likely to be cancelled. We recognize that and want to stand with them in support."

Major League Baseball's policy requiring teams pay their minor league players $400 per week ended May 31. 

With the minor league season expected to be canceled, teams have been slashing their budgets by releasing players or outright stopping payments. The Oakland Athletics informed minor leaguers they would no longer be paid after May 31.

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The Nationals released more than 30 minor leaguers, per Britt Ghiroli of The Athletic.