Giants minor leaguer Matt Paré calls himself the “Homeless Minor Leaguer” in his YouTube channel centered on sketch comedy.
Paré is a designated hitter in the Giants system — four seasons into A ball, now in San Jose — and he is not terribly upset about working for wage below the federal minimum.
“I think the system makes sense,” Paré told USA Today’s For The Win podcast about minor league baseball. “You’re incentivizing these players to get better, and you’re going to get a better product out on the field in the Major Leagues, which is the ultimate goal. … I love where I’m at, and the situation that I’m in. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
It’s true that Paré knew what he was getting into when, in 2013, he tried out for the Giants and signed a contract as an undrafted free agent. He grew up in Portland, Maine in a family that hosted minor leaguers from the Class AA Sea Dogs, according to USA Today.
Now, Paré writes for and stars in “Homeless Minor Leaguer” with Mets minor leaguer Ty Kelly, his offseason roommate. Their most-watched video is a parody of Sarah McLachlan’s ASPCA commercials called “Minor Leaguers Need Your Help.” They also have a piece on “How to Make Money in the Offseason” since some minor leaguers don’t earn a living wage playing baseball.
Paré, who is sympathetic to the disconcertingly low income, appreciates playing for a Giants organization that pays for clubhouse dues and provides healthy catered meals. With that help, he thinks the minor league system is one well-suited for a young man like him, with no kids and a college degree to fall back on if baseball doesn’t pan out.
“Things change in your life, where money is a factor in decisions you make,” Paré told USA Today. “And that’s not to say you don’t love the game; that’s a mature decision. Some guys do have to stop playing. That’s OK. Not everyone’s going to make the Major Leagues. Those are the sacrifices that we all have to make. I’ve made a bunch of trips to L.A. because of the YouTube channel recently. Everyone in L.A. has made some sort of sacrifice to do what they’re doing because they want to pursue their dream. I’d say it’s the same thing on the minor league side. It’s so amazing to be around people when you know that every one of them has sacrificed something to be where they are now.”
Paré said the Giants treat their minor league players well and he likes the connections he’s made from the gig. Plus, he’s a happy camper living out of his car.
“That’s what’s so exciting about this profession: You’re always on the move,” Paré told USA Today. “It’s a lifestyle I’m so used to now. You take a minimalist approach to everything. If I can’t fit everything that I own in my car, then I probably need to get rid of some stuff.”