Minor League Baseball’s Wage Problem

Ryan Duarte, Sports Editor

Major League Baseball is notorious for having big, long-tenured contracts for its star players. Center fielder Mike Trout signed a 12 year/$427 million contract extension with the Los Angeles Angels a few years ago. Shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. recently signed a large extension for 14 years/$340 million with the San Diego Padres.
However, the MLB’s minor league system has a big issue with not paying its players enough.
Not only are minor league players not being compensated fairly, but they are also given limited resources when they’re traveling. Long workdays, pay that is considered less than minimum wage, and bus rides are all a normal part of the journey to stardom for minor league players.
An alumni of California State University, East Bay’s baseball team, who declined to go on the record, further confirmed this way of life is normal for just about any minor league player.
“I’ve known guys who got nothing more than a ham sandwich and a piece of fruit for dinner during those long road trips,” a source who chose to be anonymous said.
According to the Associated Press, starting this past 2021 season, MLB raised the minimum pay of minor league players up to 38%. However, this does not solve all of the issues that minor league players constantly face. Travel accommodations and pay during downtime are issues that should also be addressed.
The unnamed source also added: “Some guys are financially stable enough to where downtime isn’t an issue. Others need to work full-time jobs in the offseason just to keep the lights on. There needs to be a medium where these guys can focus on their game and have the opportunity to improve.”
Every player has their journey, and players will not usually have the same experience in MLB’s farm system. But this is only the first step in making sure minor league baseball players have equal opportunity in maximizing their talents and becoming major leaguers.