The MLB and MLBPA are in one of the biggest stare downs in professional sports history.
With the COVID-19 pandemic occurring concurrently with the Black Lives Matter movement, the return of professional baseball seems like a spec on the radar of real-world issues these days.
It is an issue over money happening a time in which we are actively seeing our world come closer and closer to the brink of civil and social destruction.
With that being said, what’s next for baseball?
After the MLB made it’s most recent offer, the players union scoffed at it and rejected it, and immediately deciding that the MLBPA “will not counteroffer.” This is leaving MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred with no choice but to impose the shortened season as agreed upon by the league and players in March.
Last week, Rob Manfred spoke to Tom Verducci of MLB Network:
“We are going to play baseball in 2020, 100%… if it has to be under the March 26 agreement, so be it. One way or the other we are playing Major League Baseball.”
If there is in fact a baseball season, there might not be expanded playoffs like the players were working for in negotiations, but they will get paid their full prorated salary if Manfred does in fact implement a season to be played. The players have been vying for full prorated salaries the entire negotiation, but the owners have been less than receptive to the idea with the lack of fans in the stands buying tickets and concessions.
Watching the MLB and MLBPA negotiate is like watching two children negotiate while dad watches from the porch, hoping they figure it out before he has to step in.
SPOILER ALERT: The kids can’t figure it out.
Now the decision comes for dad to take over. Both sides will have to deal with the decision, and both sides will have complaints. But in the end, neither side could figure it out and now have to abide by the rule of Dad.
The effects of this botched negotiation will not go away after the commissioner implements the season for 2020. The bad faith by both the players and league will carry on and could in fact lead to a strike in the near future over, you guessed it, money.
The MLB is one of the few professional leagues that does not have a ser salary cap, but if the players agree to play for anything less than a full prorated salary this season, the door will be left open for the league owners to try and push for a salary cap, which would limit the big-time contracts across the league, costing players millions of dollars in the long run.
Baseball will be back eventually but don’t get too comfortable, as the fun has just begun between the owners vs players.
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