veterans who sign minor league deals face challenges on and off the field

  • Baseball One byproduct of baseball’s changing free-agent market is that older players — guys past the ripe age of 30 — have a harder time finding work. Some get squeezed out of the game altogether, and the ones who stick around are increasingly doing so with minor league contracts. For players with a lot of experience and a good track record, that can be tough on a few different levels. It’s humbling, they can lose a sense of place, and it means returning to the minor leagues after years in the majors. MORE: Watch 'ChangeUp,' a new live whiparound show on DAZNAfter playing for the Rockies from 2009 to last season, Carlos Gonzalez, 33, opted for free agency last October, and then found a free-agent market that was essentially closed off to guys like him. He’s a three-time All Star, three-time Gold Glove winner, a batting champion in 2010, and a key piece of three Rockies’ postseason teams — and he could not find work.  It took until March 19 — just days before spring training ended — for him to get a minor league contract with the Indians. Gonzalez spent the final days of spring in minor league camp preparing to hit the road to st夜网论坛art the season with the Triple-A Columbus Clippers. Outside of brief rehab appearances, he had not played at that level in a decade.“I didn’t expect the play in the minor leagues,” Gonzalez told Sporting News. “The last time I was in the minor leagues was 2009. You kind of put that in t[......]