MLB: We shouldn’t be paying minor leaguers during spring training – Sports Talk Florida
MLB considers minor league players to be interns.
Baseball is a 19and game of the century that seems to be struggling to adopt a 21st foot of the century and it could be because the owners of Major League Baseball are stuck in 19and thought of the century. Without minor league baseball, there is no major league baseball as the owners know. Players must gain professional experience because MLB cannot depend on a university system to produce players like the National Football League or the National Basketball Association. There is no junior system producing players to send to the National Hockey League. There are no team sponsored football academies. MLB owners seem to have a hard time understanding that minor league players should be paid a living wage. MLB owners really don’t want to pay above the minimum for what they call seasonal employees and are now throwing another word into the mix, interns.
Major League Baseball attorney Elise Bloom said in federal court that minor league players shouldn‘t be paid during spring training. “During the practice season, the players are not employees and would not be subject to the Fair Labor Standards Act or any state minimum wage law,” Bloom told the court. “It is the players who benefit most from the training opportunities offered to them than the clubs, who in fact only bear the cost of this training.” MLB is in court because in 2020 the United States Supreme Court allowed a class action lawsuit against minor league baseball players who allege they are paid less than minimum wage. In 2021, Denise Martin, senior vice president of NERA Economic Consulting, wrote in court that players attending spring training receive a weekly value of $2,200 from their teams. Martin claimed that would be the cost of attending prospect camp. MLB owners clearly don’t like their employees.