St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright and his wife have donated $250,000 to help provide assistance to the Cardinals’ minor-league players during the COVID-19 pandemic, per The Athletic’s Emily Waldon.
MLB suspended the start of the 2020 season on March 12 due to the spread of the coronavirus. It came in the midst of spring training, when minor-league players aren’t paid and just receive a meal stipend each day. As the season drew closer, MiLB players were going to be without a source of any income indefinitely.
While MLB announced a short-term plan to provide MiLB players with a lump sum to cover the lost allowances, that still left many without any source of income for the foreseeable future. It’s especially problematic since it is difficult for players to find work because they must also prepare for a baseball season and could be called away from the job at any time.
It’s great to see Wainwright giving back and recognizing where he came from. He knows what it’s like to be working at the lower levels and clearly has compassion for all those who are struggling right now.
Hopefully, MLB comes up with a plan to pay its minor-league players as long as the season is suspended. Given the criticism the league has often received for paying its players below minimum wage, these athletes are struggling even more financially right now.
If interested in supporting minor-league players during the COVID-19 pandemic, more information can be found here.