In an unprecedented move among Major League Baseball owners, Steve Cohen and the New York Mets reportedly met with nonprofit group Advocates for Minor Leaguers to discuss pay and unfair working conditions in the minors.
According to reports, New York State Senator Jessica Ramos attended and helped mediate the first round of talks back in April. Ramos was also the Senator who had originally wrote a letter to Cohen to address the several issues that have been brought up from the advocacy groups.
Another meeting is scheduled for a later time period.
“Since Steve Cohen took ownership of the Mets in 2020, he has been so responsive to the fans and cared for the team in a way that matches our devotion to the team,” Ramos said in a statement “I’m looking forward to sitting down with Uncle Steve and the minor leaguers so we can work out a way to finish the job, and extend that same sense of care to all the players.”
While the issues of fair play and living conditions have been a major concern, Ramos also proposed a number of other changes to be made for the minor leaguers including, but not limited to, covering the cost of in-season housing, providing or covering the cost of meals, and covering the cost of off-season training.
The talks are one of the first reported meetings between a front office, and minor leaguers.
The latest conversations with the Mets have come after MLB and it’s minor leaguers came to a settlement in a lawsuit back in May after minor leaguers had sued the league over unfair pay and living conditions.
MLB raised minor league salaries in 2021, with full-season minor leaguers earning between $12,000 and $16,800 per season.
Mets have been involved with Minor Leaguers Discussions Before
Minor league players for the Mets High-A Affiliate, Brooklyn Cyclones were among those who protested working conditions last September by wearing teal wristbands featuring the hashtag #FairBall — a demonstration organized by Advocates for Minor Leaguers.
Steve Cohen had spoken out last July to say that he was looking into the treatment of the minor league players in the Mets organization.
While minor leaguers pay has improved due to their latest discussions with Major League Baseball, the improper living conditions issue has continued to grow as a major issue for the advocacy groups.
In a report back in January, the advocacy groups had been looking for ways to close major loopholes and make public of any major league club that does not adhere to proper living conditions or pay wages in the future.
The Mets and MLB both declined to comment on the status of the current meetings scheduled in the future.
While Steve Cohen and the Mets have continued to set the standard for ballclubs when it comes to paying for top players in the world, they have also set the standard of trying to find new ways to make sure the minor leaguers are also taken care of with acceptable pay and fair living conditions.
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