In the wake of recent reports, the Player’s Association (MLBPA) has sent a letter to trainers in the Dominican Republic and Venezuela condemning MLB’s latest push for an International Draft.
It’s no secret that children as young as 13-years of age have been targeted by MLB scouts in countries like the Dominican Republic and Venezuela. For months, the Dominican media has been reporting on the issue, airing the grievances of buscónes or trainers in news reports that go underreported here in the US.
On Friday, a report by ESPN’s Jeff Passan indicated that MLB is getting buy-in for an International Draft from trainers with growing concerns of these children agreeing to deals with MLB teams. Many, including the MLBPA, viewed this latest development as somewhat of a ploy on behalf of MLB in order to get its way with an International Draft.
So, in response, the MLBPA has condemned MLB’s latest push in a memo sent to trainers, which Welcome to THE SHOW has obtained (Below).Mensaje para los Peloteros de Grandes Ligas -2
The memo essentially acknowledges that the MLBPA has been informed of meetings being held between MLB and Dominican and Venezuelan buscónes that are part of baseball’s Trainer Partnership Program (TPP) in which an International Draft was proposed for the year 2020. The MLBPA addresses three main points, translated and paraphrased in English here for your convenience:
- The entry of amateur players (international or domestic) is subject to the labor agreement. MLB has no authority to unilaterally implement a draft and is required to negotiate with the MLBPA regarding any changes to the current international system. The Player’s Association is not in agreement with these proposed changes nor have they been informed by MLB of any changes to date.
- The MLBPA has been informed that organizations have come to agreements with international players aged 13 and 14 years old, a violation of the current agreement.
- After denying this over the years, MLB is now using this to justify an International Draft system.
The memo concludes by urging MLB to reinforce the current agreement and to investigate organizations who are involved in the signing of children instead of “cynically exploiting” this issue to advance its agenda of an International Draft.