There’s unfortunately a lot of bad things reportedly going on in the LA Angels‘ Minor League system.
Joon Lee of ESPN wrote a story about the players’ complaints, and what their experiences have been like.
“Arte Moreno wouldn’t have his kids live like this,” said Kieran Lovegrove.
Lovegrove is a current pitcher for the LA Angels’ Double-A affiliate Rocket City Trash Pandas. He’s currently living with five others in a three-bedroom apartment (two teammates sleeping in the living room and one in the kitchen).
The LA Angels could be in serious trouble with what’s being reported.
Shane Kelso, who played for the LA Angels’ Low-A affiliate Inland Empire 66ers, retired due to the living conditions for the players. He even mentioned that there were four players living in a camper van at a trailer park. He also mentioned that some lived in cars.
According to Lovegrove, Minor Leaguers have entered mental health crises due to the stress of not making enough money to live a reasonable life with reasonable living conditions.
"“We’re reaching a point now where this is actually becoming detrimental to the players’ overall health and the owner not addressing it is [the organization] actively saying that they don’t care about the health of their players.”"
Kelso cited that rent was $2,000 per month for him, but he was only paid $1,600 per month.
Lovegrove has said that he is considering retiring from the game. He has had to work four other jobs other than playing for the Trash Pandas. He works as an Uber driver, a Lyft driver, a warehouse worker at Best Buy, and a warehouse worker for UPS.
The Angels are also being hypocritical to their expectations towards the players’ dieting, according to these reports.
Kelso cited the team wanting him to eat 3,500 to 4,500 calories every day, but they only paid for him to consume 800 to 1,200.
“That’s required for our job,” said Kelso. “If we don’t do that, our bodies fail and we can’t do it.”
He’s exactly right. This is inexcusable if this is indeed happening, and I have no reason to believe it’s not.
“We had guys lose 5 pounds in two weeks,” said Lovegrove.
The Angels have a very poor farm system, which is ranked 25th in the Majors. Perhaps these living conditions are part of that.
After all, Lovegrove expressed that he believes that Angels Owner Arte Moreno “really doesn’t give a s— about the winning side” of owning and developing a baseball franchise.
"“Is Moreno completely out of touch with the reality of what it’s like to be a player? Probably. I don’t see that really changing because I don’t know that he really does care about the quality of the organization so much as the amount of money it produces.”"
Arte Moreno was requested for comment by ESPN, but did not respond.
“What is being reported is unacceptable, and we will look into it and address it,” said LA Angels General Manager Perry Minasian.
Lovegrove, who played for four other systems, said that the Angels’ treatment of Minor Leaguers was easily worse than the others.
These issues are absolutely not okay, and need to be addressed. Not only are they inhumane, but they seem to be contributing to the Angels’ farm system being so bad when they haven’t been earning poor draft slots due to their disappointing play on the field for these past six years.