You can count Tampa Bay Rays ace Blake Snell among those who are not on board with the Major League Baseball’s proposal for a 50-50 revenue split as part of its plan to salvage the 2020 season amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a Twitch stream Wednesday, the 2018 American League Cy Young winner said he was not willing to accept the concession because players had previously agreed to be paid prorated shares of their salary and because of the risk involved in a potential return to play. The league’s plan would see the season start near the beginning of July with an 82-game regular season.
“Naw, I’m not splitting no revenue — I want all mine,” said Snell.
“Bro, y’all gotta understand, too, cause y’all going to be like, ‘Blake, play for the love of the game, man. What’s wrong with you, bro? Money should not be a thing.’ Bro, I’m risking my life. What do you mean it should not be a thing? It 100 per cent should be a thing. If I’m going to play, I should be getting the money I signed to be getting paid. I should not be getting half of what I’m getting paid because the season’s cut in half. On top of a 33 per cent cut of the half that’s already there. So I’m really getting like 25 per cent. On top of that, it’s getting taxed. So imagine how much I’m actually making to play, you know what I’m sayin’? Like, I ain’t makin’ (expletive).”
Snell said he also feared the potential long-term consequences of contracting the novel coronavirus — which has infected at least 1.3 million people in the U.S and led to the deaths of more than 84,000, according to The New York Times, as of Thursday morning — should play resume.
“If I get the ‘rona, guess what happens with that? Oh yeah, that’s in my body forever … That damage that was done to my body that’s going to be there forever. So now I gotta play with that on top of that,” said Snell, in reference to some early and limited research showing chronic effects.
“So y’all gotta understand, man, for me to take a pay cut is not happening because the risk is through the roof, it’s a shorter season, less pay. I gotta get my money. I’m not playing unless I get mine. That’s just the way it is for me.”
… I love baseball to death, it’s just not worth it,” he concluded.
After hearing his counterpart’s comments, Philadelphia Phillies star Bryce Harper offered his support during a Twitch stream on Thursday.
“He ain’t lying, he’s right. He’s speaking the truth, bro. I ain’t mad at him. Somebody’s gotta say it, at least he manned up and said it. Good for him. I love Snell, the guy’s a beast, too. One of the best lefties in the game, bro,” said Harper.