Red Sox

Drone flying over Fenway Park catches attention of Red Sox, security, Boston Police, and the FAA

Drone flying over Fenway Park catches attention of Red Sox, security, Boston Police, and the FAA

Red Sox players and fans were treated to an uninvited guest during Thursday's win over the Blue Jays -- a drone hovering over Fenway Park.

The small remote-controlled plane made at least two passes of the park, catching the attention of Fenway security, the Boston Police, and even the FAA, according to team sources. It did not escape the notice of the players, either.

"It kind of threw me off, I looked up and I was like, 'Hey, they're not supposed to have these around here, are they?'" said first baseman Mitch Moreland. "But I figured I'd try to hit it or something."

Moreland nearly succeeded by bombing the game-tying double in the ninth inning to center with the drone overhead.

According to a team spokesman, ballpark security noticed the drone early in the game before it flew over the river into Cambridge. By the time it returned late in the game, the Boston Police Department was actively searching the area outside the ballpark for the pilot.

A spokesman for the FAA told Ch. 4 that they would check to see if a permit or waiver had been issued for use of the drone. According to FAA regulations, flying drones within three miles of a Major League Baseball stadium is prohibited from one hour before a game to one hour after.

Multiple outlets reported that the drone in question was a DJI Phantom. The company issued a statement to Ch. 5, among others, that it was investigating.

"DJI is aware that an apparent DJI Phantom drone was spotted over Fenway Park during (Thursday night's) Red Sox game," the company said. "We are trying to learn more about what happened, and stand ready to work with Boston Police and other security agencies to investigate what happened. Whoever flew this drone over the stadium apparently overrode our geofencing system and deliberately violated the FAA temporary flight restriction in place over the game."

Red Sox manager Alex Cora made a prediction.

"Somebody will make a T-shirt out of it," he said.

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MLB rumors: David Price to give $1,000 to Dodgers minor leaguers in June

MLB rumors: David Price to give $1,000 to Dodgers minor leaguers in June

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher David Price is going into his own pocket to help his fellow baseball players.

Sports has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, and that's definitely true for Minor League Baseball and its players.

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ESPN's Jeff Passan reported that hundreds of minor league players were released Thursday, with many more cuts expected to come. 

Price is trying to help, and according to baseball writer Francys Romero, the Dodgers pitcher will give money in June to players in the Dodgers' minor league system.

This is a very generous gesture from Price.

Price, as Romero notes, has yet to play for the Dodgers. He was traded, along with superstar outfielder Mookie Betts, from the Boston Red Sox to the Dodgers in February. He's probably never met a lot of these Dodgers minor leaguers, but he's still willing to help them through this difficult time.

We still don't know when Price will make his Dodgers debut because it remains unknown if the 2020 season will happen at all. The league and the MLBPA reportedly have been negotiating different return proposals, but no agreement has been announced at this time.

How Bobby Bonilla Day can save MLB's ongoing salary dispute

How Bobby Bonilla Day can save MLB's ongoing salary dispute

If baseball wants to solve its impasse over player compensation during the pandemic, here's a thought — make Bobby Bonilla Day a holiday.

Bonilla is the former Mets slugger who struck an incredible deal as his career wound to a close.

In exchange for waiving the final $5.9 million he was owed in 2000, Bonilla agreed to receive 25 payments of roughly $1.19 million every July 1 from 2011 through 2035.

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Why trade $6 million in 2000 for nearly $30 million later? Because Mets owner Fred Wilpon intended to invest the money with Bernie Madoff, whose funds consistently delivered massive returns. We now know Madoff was running the world's biggest Ponzi Scheme, and when his $64 billion fraud collapsed in 2008, it took hundreds of millions of Wilpon's money with it.

What's bad for him was good for Bobby Bo, however. Every summer, the six-time All-Star receives a check for over a million dollars, payments that will continue until he's 72. (The Mets, it should be noted, also agreed to make 25 annual $250,000 payments to Bret Saberhagen for similar reasons, starting in 2004.)

Here's where the current contentiousness enters the picture.

The owners want the players to take a massive pay cut in exchange for a season, arguing they can't afford to play in empty ballparks without salary concessions. The players don't want to return a penny, and in fact hope to play more than the proposed 82 games to make as much of their prorated salaries as possible.

One solution is deferrals. The players agree to put off some portion of their earnings, allowing ownership to maintain cash flow in the short term before the game's economics hopefully stabilize in the future.

And what better day to do it than Bobby Bonilla Day? Every July 1 starting next year, the players can receive a portion of their 2020 salary. Maybe it's paid in installments over three to five years, or maybe it's a lump sum.

However it's done, it could represent a meaningful olive branch from the players and a signal that they're willing to compromise in these unprecedented times.

The value for the owners is clear, because Wilpon isn't the only one who sees the allure of deferrals. The World Series champion Nationals prefer them as a rule, deferring not only $105 million of Max Scherzer's $210 million contract, but even $3 million of the $4 million they gave reliever Joe Blanton in 2017.

With players and owners at each other's throats, it could be disarming to invoke one of the game's stranger annual curiosities. And if it helps us play baseball in 2020, there's also this: Open the season on July 1 and make Bobby Bonilla Day, for one year anyway, a national holiday.