Cheri Bustos

Baseball players in minors to lose minimum wage protection

Minor league baseball players who make as little as $5,500 a season were stripped of the protection of federal minimum wage laws under a provision in government spending legislation signed Friday.

The "Save America's Pastime Act" is included on page 1,967 of the $1.3 trillion spending bill and appears to pre-empt a lawsuit filed four years ago in U.S. District Court in San Francisco by three players alleging Major League Baseball and its teams violate the Fair Labor Standards Act and state minimum wage and overtime requirements for a work week they estimated at 50-to-60 hours.

The provision in the legislation exempts "any employee employed to play baseball who...