(WTNH) – Senator Richard Blumenthal is taking a swing at Major League Baseball’s restrictions on minor league pay and compensation.
He’s calling for scrutiny of MLB’s anti-trust exemption and its impact on minor league teams like the Hartford Yard Goats and the Norwich Sea Unicorns.
Unlike MLB players, “Minor leaguers” have no union, and are paid according to a scale set by the
30 major league teams. Last week the MLB agreed to pay $185 million to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by minor league players over unpaid wages.
The bipartisan members of the U.S. Senate judiciary committee are seeking to make MLB accountable for what they say is ” a misuse” of the antitrust exemption.
This comes after the Sea Unicorns were one of 40 minor league teams cut from affiliated status during the pandemic.
“Now, that team is joining others in suing Major League Baseball and the Department of Justice Anti-trust Division is joining them, supporting their efforts too,” Blumenthal said.
The Senate Judiciary Committee will examine the league’s exemption and its effect on players’ salaries, team contraction, work stoppages, and more.
“I personally believe this antitrust exemption, unique to baseball has far outlived its time. No longer justified, an aberration that should be discarded so that players and teams are treated fairly. So they have, literally a level playing field… With this antitrust exemption that elevates Major League Baseball above the law, there’s no level playing field for the players and teams in the minor league,” remarked Blumenthal.