The thought was that reorganizing the minor leagues, removing 40 teams from affiliated ball in the process, would lead to improved amenities and better pay for players.
The minimum weekly pay increased, but with the minors’ season shortened due to the pandemic after not playing last year at all, the annual salaries still fall between $10,000-15,000 for players, some of whom don’t have the benefit of signing bonuses to sustain them throughout a calendar year.
And the food provided to players remained questionable, at best, in the Oakland Athletics organization. Pictures provided to the group Advocates for Minor Leaguers showed a white-bread sandwich with no protein and tomato slice, while another showed a taco with a barely-filled tortilla.
On Twitter, A’s president Dave Kaval made it seem like the food photographed had been served weeks ago.
“This was totally unacceptable … we terminated the third party vendor,” Kaval wrote. “We apologize to our players, staff, and coaches. We will redouble our efforts to provide the best options for our team at every level.”
“I got friends in prison that eat better than this,” former major leaguer Adam Jones tweeted. “And before the non athletes say ‘suck it up, you’re in the minors’ these guys are ATHLETES!! Athletes require proper fuel. This ain’t it. Not asking for Ruth Chris but damn!!”
The A’s are fighting another public relations battle as the team has begun looking into relocation. Efforts to build a new ballpark at the “Howard Terminal” location have not been approved by the city.
Follow Chris Bumbaca on Twitter @BOOMbaca.