Baseball careers often start with winter grunt work

FORT MYERS, Fla. (AP) — Long before any of that major league money starts landing in their bank accounts, most baseball players are in a similar predicament as everyone else in the regular workforce.

Between baseball seasons there are no paychecks and bills don’t stop for the winter. So they need to find jobs.

Minnesota Twins reliever Casey Fien says he signed for $500 and a plane ticket so he had to earn money.

He went to Costco.

The right arm that would eventually fetch Fien a $1.38 million salary from the Twins for 2015 was once used for stacking crates, pallets and boxes at the bulk retail giant.

Minor league living is hardly large. The minimum salary for a player in Class A is $1,100 per month over a five-month season. In Triple-A, it’s $2,150 per month.

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AP Baseball Writer Noah Trister and AP Sports Writers Ronald Blum and Steven Wine contributed to this report.

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