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Dodgers: Max Scherzer Says Owners’ ‘Intent to Win’ a Core Issue for New CBA



Major League Baseball is in the midst of a lockout that doesn’t seem to be ending anytime soon. In fact, recent reports state that the MLBPA and MLB have yet to even schedule a meeting in 2022 to discuss a new CBA.

Apparently, it’s not going to be a happy new year.

There’s a host of issues that the two sides strongly disagree on. According to Scherzer, the MLBPA contends that owners are intentionally not fielding competitive teams – among other issues.

Revenue Over Results?

As one could imagine, the ultra-competitive Max Scherzer isn’t exactly a big fan of tanking. Scherzer is also a member of the MLBPA’s eight-player executive subcommittee.

In an interview with the LA Times Jorge Castillo, Scherzer sounded off on the notion that MLB owners are solely focused on revenue and not trying to win games. The MLBPA is hoping to address that during the negotiations.

“This negotiation is about the integrity of the game from our eyes. We feel as players that too many teams have gone into a season without any intent to win during this past CBA. Even though that can be a strategy to win in future years, we’ve seen both small-market and large-market clubs embrace tanking, and that cannot be the optimal strategy for the owners.”

MLB Lockout Update: Why Players are MAD at MLB Owners/Rob Manfred, Could Dodgers Season Be Delayed?

Scherzer on MLB Service Time Manipulation

Scherzer also condemned service time manipulation as a tool to maintain financial control over younger players.

“Additionally, when you have that tanking component in there, it also leads to service-time manipulation. It’s changing free agency from what it was supposed to be. Free agency’s supposed to be six years, and they’re manipulating it into seven years and that’s not OK in our book.”

There’s a lot of uncertainty when it comes to the MLB and the MLBPA agreeing to a new CBA.

One thing is clear though, it’s going to be a long winter.

NEXT: Max Scherzer Worried About ‘Jeopardizing’ His Career in Potential NLCS Game 6 Start

Written by Eric Eulau

Born and raised in Ventura, not "Ven-CH-ura", California. Favorite Dodger Stadium food is the old school chocolate malt with the wooden spoon. Host of the Dodgers Nation 3 Up, 3 Down Podcast.

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  1. “ Scherzer sounded off on the notion that MLB owners are solely focused on revenue and not trying to win games. ”

    Given recent move to the Mets I think the owners could say the same thing about Max.

  2. Translated he means, owners aren’t paying us enough. 59 million a year doesn’t go as far as it used to! Max would be smart to just stop talking right now

  3. I’m guessing that – even though he may be a good source for info – most Dodger fans would rather not hear what Scherzer has to say about anything these days.

  4. It appears that the players, like many others in the everyday workforce, want to make the same money as those who own the business because they believe themselves ‘equal.’ As like the everyday workforce, there are many in baseball already overpaid for what their job and contribution to that job or career they perform. I don’t buy into the tanking theory, but lean more to owners not overpaying for average and below employees, though some may simply be cheap. Tampa Bay seems to prove the tanking theory false, and other FO’s with low team payrolls are simply dysfunctional, with the possibility that perhaps 1-2 do simply take advantage of the system for money, as our favorite agent Scott Boras performs so well.

    • l think he is really against teams tanking to get early draft picks. See how tanking worked for the Astros by losing 100+ games for years. The A’s and Braves have had success tanking as well.
      Screw the Dodgers

  5. Sherzer seems pretty concerned about his own revenue, but thinks baseball owners shouldn’t be. I think the proper term for that is hypocrisy.

  6. So , write a thread about the million dollar elephant in the room then shut off replies…Brilliant, Goebbels would be proud. Our 34 million dollar pitcher wants to pitch….I suppose the writers hiding the truth about what the fans truly think of the situation..

  7. Forget that it was Scherzer that said it and listen to the message…He’s not wrong. The owners are manipulating players service time and some, out of necessity perhaps, are not fielding competitive teams.

    • You mean like how Drrrrrrrr and the Dodgers manipulated Matt Beaty? And how that manipulation eventually was a BIG reason they lost the division…….Agreed, some but the Dodgers have NO excuse to do that to Beaty as he was a Far superior option to play 1st base and hit compared to Neuse, Mckinney, Souza,Reks etc etc etc. That is just blatant bias towards a player in more ways than one..

    • Perhaps the players should sacrifice some money to change the ability to manipulate service time so those players can get some of the money they want for themselves. IIRC, didn’t the players ignore that opportunity in favor of retaining personal chefs in the clubhouse, or something to that level of cheese?

  8. A small market team does not have the luxury of other teams who can just buy their way to a winning season. They need to strike a balance between players under team control and a few mid-level free agents. If such a team still cannot win, they usually sell off their more expensive players and seek minor leaguers who would help the team in the future. They hope to field a winning team with reasonable salary costs. It does not mean that they are tanking; it’s just being realistic and prudent. Scherzer’s experience has been with teams willing to pay a lot of money to win. He does not appreciate the situation created by the huge salaries demanded by some free agents.

  9. Sports ‘unions’ and contract negotiations are an ongoing joke, the players are independent contractors, after reaching free agent status all are competing for the same owner dollars. Max like most of the player reps are more established veterans whose own interests don’t line up with the poor younger players under team control who they always are ‘fighting for’. If they get them free agency earlier owners would spend a greater portion of their money to younger proven players and guys like Max would lose value. The draft which was meant to equalize the teams over time only allows the small market teams to function as farm teams for the large market teams, when the players become eligible as free agents. Smaller market teams sign a few bargains, the cream goes to the top teams, the rest to fill holes for the league or drop out of baseball. If the draft was ended and players evaluated teams and accepted offers when leaving amateur baseball, combined with an organizational salary cap, teams could pick and chose where to spend their money, at the player development end or at the major league level. The owners are no better, a few was lock up the best talent with ridiculous guaranteed contracts in an occupation that has high level of attrition in the highest level players. The others play the short end and squeeze what they can in team control years. What industry guarantees contractor payments without said contractor meeting targets for productivity and performance? An arbitration process determines proper salaries for players under team control based on past performance. Guaranteed contracts should include a similar review on the season just completed to account, for sub par performance whether due to excessive injury time, trouble off the field, player apathy or decaying skills. Snowed in on the east coast rant concluded.

  10. Will or would the top contract players agree to limits placed on money paid to make the service time for the younger be moved to 2-4 years allowing them to get paid sooner, which bites into their ability to get more when they reach peak-potential years in their careers. I think many will find the answer to be a resounding NO. Most people will fight only for the others to a point, and that point is dictated by how much comes out of their pockets.

  11. I’m not a fan of Max any more since he betrayed the Dodger fans and left quickly for more money and the Mets. I don’t care what he thinks, says, or does (except lose)!

  12. Money, Money, MONEY!!!
    Both sides have points and are also greeeeedy, entitled, spoiled.
    The Golden Goose CAN die, you know.

  13. I said this in 1994 and I believe it applies in 2022: a pox on both their houses. I’m on the fans’ side.

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