Rays owner Stuart Sternberg weighed in on the MLBPA’s grievance against the Rays and three other clubs regarding concerns over the reallocation of revenue-sharing funds, as Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times writes. The Rays, according to Sternberg, are “beyond” compliant with the rules. “We’re very judicious in how we spend our money, but it’s spent in a lot of forms, and payroll is one of them,” said Sternberg, going on to point out that the Rays’ Opening Day payroll in 2018 will be higher than it was in 2017. Of course, the Rays still rank near the bottom of the league in that regard, as they do every year. Chris Archer, the Rays’ union representative, also spoke with Topkin on the matter. “I have no clue what it costs to run the Dominican academy,” said Archer. “I know just from my perspective, not a whole lot has changed with the spring training facility, not a whole lot has changed at the Trop, and our payroll has not increased significantly.”
- Veteran Red Sox star Dustin Pedroia had a bit more done to his knee than had previous been known, Pete Abraham of the Boston Globe reports on Twitter. In addition to cartilage restoration work, Pedroia underwent a microfracture procedure to his tibia. Regardless, it seems that the hard-nosed veteran is progressing well given that he has now advanced to taking batting practice. Meanwhile, fellow infielder Marco Hernandez is still six weeks away from resuming baseball activities, Rob Bradford of WEEI.com tweets. Hernandez underwent shoulder surgery last May and only just had screws removed, but at least he now seems to be in sight of returning to the field.
- In other Red Sox coverage, Bradford discusses new signee J.D. Martinez’s unique relationship with his personal hitting coach. As it turns out, new Boston hitting coach Tim Hyers is well acquainted with Martinez’s guru Robert Van Scoyoc, who’ll be allowed to continue consulting with Martinez even though he has been hired by the Diamondbacks. It’s a deep and interesting look at how Martinez’s unique approach will fit with the organization.
- Orioles hurler Chris Lee will miss at least a month with an oblique injury, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com was among those to tweet. The southpaw had been viewed as one of a variety of hurlers competing for one rotation spot, a long-relief role in the pen, and/or a place in the organizational depth chart. Instead, he’ll have to work back to health before he’s able to begin pressing for his first MLB opportunity. The 25-year-old reached Triple-A for the first time last year, pitching to a 5.11 ERA with 6.4 K/9 and 4.2 BB/9 over 116 1/3 innings.