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Tampa Bay Rays News and Links: The word of the day is Labor

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It seems like the potential incoming labor negotiations have filled the void of a slow offseason

MLB, MLBPA Announce New Labor Agreement Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

The combination of not having much actual baseball news, as well as the fact that there have been leaks of potentially lower contracts for the big names out there (whether those leaks are true or not matter not for these purposes, sadly), have seemingly combined in a lot of Future Hand Wringing.

The Hard Left of the baseball Illuminati is always out in full force, but writers such as Ken Rosenthal and Sheryl Ring are writing about MLBPA head Tony Clark and fixing baseball’s arbitration system with a tone that seems to imply that worrying about a potential labor stoppage is at least not totally unfounded. Or at the very least, that some of baseball’s policies need updating, and whenever that’s the case, it’s always a challenge to find a new happy medium.

In a world that is seeing politics seep more and more into everyday life, as well as a baseball community that is currently going through a series of crises of faith over questions like whether all those years of saying “team-friendly” should have said “player-unfriendly,” it’s not shocking that these conversations are cropping up ahead of the next CBA negotiating window a couple years from now.

Rays News

  • The Rays community lost a legend earlier this month, as local sax player, Max Pierre, passed away on January 5 at the age of 60. The Tampa Bay Times and Rays Colored Glasses both had tributes to the local staple of Tampa Bay sporting events.
  • The Rays added Luis Santos to the spring roster on a minor league deal, and the word is he’ll have a major league camp invitation. He appeared in 15 games for the Blue Jays last season. The 27-year-old has a career strikeout rate of 25.2% (walk rate of 8.2%), and he sits 92-94, so there’s a bit of intrigue here.
  • If you’re a podcast fan, we’ve got a couple for you. First, Collin McHugh is trying to follow some of his fellow athletes into the podcast world, and his second guest was Charlie Morton:

And if you want a traditional, media-hosted pod, here’s Oliver Drake on Buster Olney’s podcast.

Around the League

  • This is a really cool, mind-bendy type of article from Stephanie Springer over at The Hardball Times. I really like what they’ve done with that site the past year or so under Meg Rowley.
  • The Death Star added another Storm Trooper to its ranks... Is that how this Stars Wars thing works? (Troll Level: Infinity)
  • The Angels nabbed Cody Allen to pretty much dry up the reliever market.
  • Tebow. You’ll either click or not regardless of whatever words I surround that name with.
  • Prospects mailbag with the obligatory Wander shoutout.
  • Jayson Stark releases his Hall of Fame ballot. Only four (!) days until we’ll know for sure on this front who’s in and who has to wait another year.