BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — There’s no bullpen in this scenario.
For Waconia native, former Gopher and current member of the Cincinnati Reds organization, Jake Stevenson is like many minor leaguers. He was at spring training but due to the coronavirus, the relief pitcher was sent home.
He regularly plays catch with friend, Bloomington Jefferson, Oklahoma graduate and pitcher in the Washington Nationals organization, Jake Irvin.
While staying in shape is a priority, most minor league players aren’t receiving income during this time.
As a mid-round draft pick out of college and with a long journey ahead of him in the farm system, Stevenson isn’t making any money right now. These players are only paid during the season.
In that reality, Michael Rivers from Eagan stepped up to the plate. The Twins fan initially created this concept of “Adopt A Minor League Player” to connect fans and people - through Twitter - with players struggling to make ends meet.
In just a few weeks time, the support has steadily grown. Rivers has already connected over 260 players with sponsors.
Between care packages of snacks, gift cards, toiletries or anything else, these people are giving back and lifting the burden on minor leaguers around the country.