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MLB Notebook: Nationals make Juan Soto available, Santiago Espinal sent to the All-Star Game, and more

Juan Soto is on the open market.

And while I still am learning about this beautiful game, it’s hard not to think that the Toronto Blue Jays should be all in. The power-lefty was reportedly offered a record-breaking 15-year, $440-million offer, The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal reported, but the player turned it down.

While it would’ve made him the highest-paid player in major league history, the Nats are reportedly making Soto available in a trade now.

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This is a massive development ahead of what was to be a busy Aug. 2 trade deadline in the first place. Soto immediately becomes the top player available, but the truth is the Nats don’t have to be in a rush to move him. He has two years of salary arbitration remaining and if a team could pick him up now, they would have control for three consecutive pennant races.

You know which team is looking to win some pennant races? That’s right, the Toronto Blue Jays.

Espinal the all-star

Santiago Espinal has been named to the midsummer classic, the Jays announced Saturday.

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He will replace Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve, who left a Friday night game with a leg injury after being hit by a pitch.

Espinal’s in the midst of a breakout season in the majors and has been one of the Jays’ better stories so far this year. He’s slashing .271/.332/.394 in 317 at-bats driving in 37 runners while hitting six homers.

Minor league lawsuit settled

The MLB will pay $185 million to settle a federal class-action lawsuit surrounding minimum wage and overtime pay for minor leaguers.

Originally filed in Feb. 2014 by former Miami Marlins minor leaguer Aaron Senne and two others, the suit was reportedly settled in May, three weeks before it was set to go to trial.

According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, thousands of players will be eligible to receive parts of the $120,197,300 due to players, with the remaining covering attorney’s fees and other costs.

“This settlement is a monumental step for minor league players toward a fair and just compensation system,” Garrett Broshuis, the attorney who spearheaded the suit, said in a statement to ESPN. “As a former minor league baseball player, I’ve seen first-hand the financial struggle players face while earning poverty-level wages — or no wages at all — in pursuit of their major league dream. For the better part of a decade, it has been my honor to help lead this fight and to shine a light on the unfair labor practices that have long plagued America’s pastime.”

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Passan reported the MLB will issue a memo that allows teams to pay minor league players during spring training, extended spring training and instructional leagues in Florida and Arizona. Previously, teams had been blocked from doing so.


Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at [email protected]


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