Aspiring Major League Baseball players currently applying their trades in the minor leagues might lose their minimum wage status as a part of Congress’ “Save America’s Pastime Act,” per Forbes’ Maury Brown.
If approved, the $1.3 trillion spending package would amend the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 that states any professional baseball player, regardless of whether they are in the majors or not, must make no less than minimum wage for a workweek of 40 hours.
Under the new amendments, ballplayers could make as little as $275 per week, which amounts to $1,100 per month.
The federal minimum wage at the moment sits at $7.25 per hour, which works out to $290 per week and $1160 per month.
The bill was introduced to the House in 2016 and wasn’t given much thought. But Major League Baseball “paid lobbyists hundreds of thousands of dollars to write a specific exemption into the law,” in order to save more money, per Mike DeBonis of the Washington Post.
Save America’s Pastime Act has been hidden almost 2,000 pages into a spending bill, showing just how successful Major League Baseball was in paying elected officials.
For anyone who knows about the organization of professional baseball in the United States, the minor leagues provide an arduous grind for its participants as conditions are far beneath the major-league standards.
Many of those MLB hopefuls will never realize their dreams of playing in the show as they carve out full careers as minor leaguers. This bill would only deter those ballplayers from staying in organized ball and force them to pursue careers elsewhere.
The bill will be voted on Friday.