Burgos: By banding together, Latino players protected international free agents

From SABR member Adrian Burgos Jr. at La Vida Baseball on April 21, 2017:

On October 26, with Major League Baseball’s collective bargaining agreement nearing its expiration, Nelson Cruz, Edwin Encarnación and others took to social media.

They started posting and retweeting, taking a stance that departed from the expectations of how Latino ballplayers should act when it comes to labor relations matters. There was a flurry of different messages, including this one on Instagram from Cruz, the Seattle Mariners’ right fielder from the Dominican Republic who has hit 40 or more home runs the past three seasons:

“Hola, soy Nelson Cruz. Yo, como muchos otros dominicanos, peloteros, scouts y familiares, no estamos de acuerdo con el draft internacional ni con el cambio de edad”.

“Hi, I’m Nelson Cruz. Like many other Dominicans, ballplayers, scouts and relatives, I do not support an international draft or a change in (eligibility) age.”

Added his fellow Dominican Encarnación in a similar posting on Instagram: “It’s not in our country’s interest.

In so doing, Cruz, Encarnación and a contingent of Latinos that included countrymen José Reyes and Gary Sánchez openly expressed their stance against the international draft, whether in the form of including foreign-born players in the amateur draft or a stand-alone draft of international prospects.

Read the full article here: https://www.lavidabaseball.com/international-mlb-draft/

Originally published: April 21, 2017. Last Updated: April 21, 2017.