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Chicago Cubs standout Patrick Wisdom describes the journey of playing up through the Minor Leagues to the Chicago Cubs to fighting through the MLB lockout.
Patrick Wisdom is an uplifting example of a Minor League player who worked his way up to stardom with the Cubs, and Bleacher Nation put his journey into the context of the MLB lockout.
As players hold firm and push for improved pay and conditions for baseball players, Wisdom has experience with what that is like. He has spent years enduring difficult living conditions for little pay in pursuit of his MLB dream.
“There’s no Opening Day because the league has not negotiated in good faith, and I would say we’re fighting to make it fair on both sides,” Wisdom explained, addressing the lockout from a player’s perspective.
Wisdom acknowledges that both sides must come together and continue working out an agreement instead of the quiet periods that have taken place over the last few months.
“If we had this week of negotiating 40 days ago, we’d be in a much better spot,” Wisdom said. “It is what it is now.”
Cubs’ Patrick Wisdom on MLB lockout: “We’re fighting to make it fair on both sides”
Wisdom also addressed misconceptions about how much minor league players are played, with some baseball fans believing MiLB players are millionaires who drive sports cars. That is a far cry from the truth: Wisdom described how he made “maybe $2,000 a month,” which is what someone with an annual salary of $24,000 makes per year.
But minor league players are only paid for five or six months out of the year, and $24,000 per year is already below the poverty line for a family of four. Minor league players are far from millionaires, as many live below the poverty line making pennies for their work and being forced to sleep in their cars.
Wisdom spent eight years in the minors, describing how his first year was spent on an air mattress in a two-bedroom apartment shared with four other roommates, being forced to eat 25 cent ramen while striving to make it in the big leagues.
“I understand that it’s a dream, you’re striving to make it to the big leagues, you’ve got to pay your dues, all that stuff—I get it, trust me,” Wisdom said. “I spent eight years in the Minor Leagues doing it. I loved it, it’s a part of the journey, and the journey’s essentially the best part, but it is a lot different than people think.”