Prospects are the Miami Marlins’ lifeblood. That has not stopped unscrupulous members of the organization from allegedly taking advantage of those players in their Dominican academy.
According to Hector Gomez, sources have revealed that several players are being subjected to “abusive” fines by administrators of the Marlins’ academy in the Dominican Republic. While those fines are reportedly between $200 and $1500 each, they are going right into the pockets of those executives.
Miami Marlins prospects being taken advantage of
When most people would imagine that a couple of hundred bucks, or even $1500, would not make that much of a difference to a baseball player. However, that is not the case with those young prospects. Top international prospects may get large signing bonuses, but far too many of the players in those academies or complex leagues do not receive much at all to sign.
Those players are the most vulnerable. They are desperate to keep their major league dreams alive, willing to go through anything in the hopes of getting that large payout in the end. If that means paying those “fines,” so be it. That desperation also allows them to be taken advantage of. The baseball version of the Sword of Damocles, the threat of being released, hangs over all of those players.
Conditions in the minors had been abhorrent for decades. Low wages, long bus rides, questionable nutrition for team meals, and housing issues had been the norm. However, the hope was that the minor leaguers having unionized would end these predatory practices. While progress has been made, it is clear that there is still a long way to go. What is happening to the Marlins’ players in the Dominican is proof of that.
The Miami Marlins need their prospects to develop in order to compete. Sadly, that has not stopped some people from taking advantage of them.