MLB Draft

Report: MLB, players want bans on mass gatherings lifted before starting season

Report: MLB, players want bans on mass gatherings lifted before starting season

As part of the agreement between Major League Baseball and its Players Association on salary and service time issues while the start of the season is on hold due to the coronavirus pandemic, the two sides have also agreed to certain conditions before they begin the season.

Those conditions, according to the part of the agreement obtained by ESPN's Jeff Passan, include:

The two sides will consider playing at neutral sites instead of home ballparks and while the preference is to play in front of fans, they haven't ruled out playing in empty stadiums, according to Passan's report. 

MLB and MLBPA reached the deal Thursday night that would allow players to gain a year of service time even if the 2020 season is shortened or canceled, meaning Mookie Betts and the rest of the 2021 free agent class would still hit the open market if there's no season. 

As to when those conditions for beginning the season will be met, it's anybody's guess. A full 162-game season seems a longshot at this point. The two sides want to play as many games as possible, perhaps by adding doubleheaders, extending the regular season into October with neutral-site playoff games in November or December.

The draft will be moved from June to late July, according to Passan. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred also has the option to shorten it to five rounds. 


 

Red Sox officially sign top pick Cameron Cannon for $1.3 million

Red Sox officially sign top pick Cameron Cannon for $1.3 million

The Red Sox agreed to terms on a contract with top draft pick Cameron Cannon Saturday for $1.3 million after selecting him 43rd overall in the MLB Draft.

Cannon was a middle infielder for the University of Arizona, hitting .397 in 2019 with eight home runs and 29 doubles. Ranked the 79th overall prospect in the draft, he's known best for his ability to make hard contact consistently with a developing power stroke. 

After the Red Sox selected Cannon in the second round, the Arizona native received praise from one scout, saying he will be a "quick mover" through the Red Sox system thanks to his "polished bat."

Michael Chavis has solidified himself at second base for the Red Sox after Dustin Pedroia went down with another injury, but you can never have enough capable hitters on your big-league roster. Now that Cannon is signed, it's time to see just how fast he can work his way to Fenway Park. 

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Red Sox 2019 draft class includes two college QBs, Dwight Evans' grandson

feleipe_franks.jpg
USA TODAY Sports

Red Sox 2019 draft class includes two college QBs, Dwight Evans' grandson

The sheer volume of the MLB Draft can be overwhelming -- 1,217 players were taken in this year's draft, 40 by the Boston Red Sox -- so we understand if your eyes glaze over.

But a closer look at Boston's 2019 draft class (full list here) reveals some pretty fascinating prospects.

Chances are you've read about fourth-round pick Noah Song, a highly-touted pitcher out of Navy who is putting his MLB dream on hold to attend Naval flight officer training.

But did you know the Red Sox drafted not one but two Division I college quarterbacks?

Feleipe Franks, RHP, 31st round
Franks isn't just any college QB ... he's the starting signal-caller for the Florida Gators, who went 10-3 in 2018 and won the Peach Bowl. The 6-foot-6 gunslinger threw 24 touchdown passes in 13 games this past season and posted a 143.4 passer rating.

Unfortunately for Red Sox fans, it appears Franks will continue his football career in Gainesville for now.

Caleb Hill, LHP, 36th round
Hill has a slightly lower profile: He began as a QB for the University of Montana and moved to tight end for his senior season. The Red Sox actually were the only MLB team to reach out to Hill, as they hope his athleticism can translate from the gridiron to the diamond.

Boston also picked up a pair of local stars -- one of which has a pretty good bloodline.

Sebastian Keane, RHP, 11th round
Keane was a senior at North Andover (Mass.) this past season and absolutely dominated, posting a 9-1 record and .027 ERA to become the first player in school history to win Gatorade Massachusetts Player of the Year.

The right-hander is committed to Northeastern next year, so he'll be staying close to home -- and could get the chance to pitch against the Red Sox in spring training next year.

Ryan Berardino, 1B, 34th round
Berardino is the grandson of Red Sox Hall of Famer Dwight Evans, who won eight Gold Gloves over nearly two decades in Boston. His other grandfather, Dick Berardino, currently works for the Red Sox as a player development consultant, so it's safe to say Berardino has close Boston ties.

Berardino hails from Sudbury, Mass., and attended local Bentley University, where he hit .355 as a junior this past season.

Whether any of these players reach the bigs remains to be seen, but with a player pool as deep as the MLB Draft, there are plenty of cool storylines -- and mustaches -- to go around.

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