#By RENALDO DORSETT
#Tribune Sports Reporter
#THE minor league baseball season was officially suspended and Major League Baseball pledged to offer players financial support through May as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.
#Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred made the official communication Tuesday and also added that minor leaguers will receive $400 per week through May 31.
#A total of 17 Bahamians are currently contracted to minor league deals. Prior to the suspension of all baseball activity, many of those players had yet to receive their assignments for the upcoming season.
#MLB previously announced financial support through April 8, the day before the minor league season was set to commence.
#Individual clubs will create their own compensation plan to assist players assigned to the Dominican Summer League.
#“While I fully anticipate that baseball will resume this season, it is very difficult to predict with any accuracy the timeline for resumption of our season. And while I am confident that MLB ultimately will emerge from this crisis as strong as ever, we will face some significant economic challenges in the foreseeable future.
#“Our clubs rely heavily on revenue from tickets/concessions, broadcasting/media, licencing and sponsorships to pay player salaries. In the absence of games, these revenue streams will be lost or substantially reduced, and clubs will not have sufficient funds to meet their financial obligations,” MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred wrote in a letter sent to clubs, and obtained by USA TODAY Sports.
#“I know that for some of you this stipend is less than you would have earned if the season were being played. However, we decided to provide a uniform amount to all Minor League players in order to provide this assistance to as many players as possible.
#“The Baseball Assistance Team (“BAT”) is available to consider grant applications on an expedited basis for those players facing significant and immediate financial hardship.’’
#According to the Associated Press, the weekly minimum salaries on full-season minor league teams range from $290 at Class A to $502 at Triple-A over the five-month season, meaning many players are making more during this hiatus than they do during the season.
#“MLB’s minor league initiative also does not cover players on the restricted, voluntary retired, disqualified or ineligible lists, and those already receiving housing or food from teams.
#“In addition, each team will make arrangements for players on Dominican Summer League rosters.”