When news broke on Tuesday afternoon that the MLB owners’ proposal had been sent to the MLBPA, there was a glimmer of hope. That glimmer of hope was destroyed in a manner of seconds with the many reports coming in on how unhappy the Player’s Association was with the initial proposal.
The details behind the proposal from MLB are still pouring in, but it certainly doesn’t look promising. The initial numbers present appear to be a far cry from the salary players would normally receive. While the exact numbers are difficult to understand, ESPN’s Jeff Passan broke them down for us.
If y'all are ready for some late-night nerding out, I'm going to explain the marginal salary structure MLB proposed to the union today. It’s complicated and will be rejected, but it's interesting to see how the league structured its first offer to the players, so bear with me.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) May 27, 2020
Passan breaks down the proposed MLB pay scale as follows, which we will use to apply to Dodgers’ players for the sake of time.
- $0 to $563,500 (league minimum) paid at 90%
- $563,501 to $1 million paid at 72.5%
- $1,000,001 to $5 million paid at 50%
- $5,000,001 to $10 million paid at 40%
- $10,000,001 to $20 million paid at 30%
- $20,000,001 and up paid at 20%
So in the case of Cody Bellinger, he was slated to make $11.5 million for the 2020 season. This would put him at the 30 percent cut, after the prorated cut. At 82 games played, Bellinger would be slated to make $5.8 million without the added cuts from ownership. Under the new proposal, he would make in the ballpark of $3 million with playoff incentives, give or take a couple hundred thousand.
Players being called up to the MLB would also see a fairly drastic swing in pay, despite how it was framed in the proposal. Under ordinary circumstances, that player would be owed the league minimum of $563,500. When prorated, their salary would sit at $285,228. The additional cuts would make it $256,706 which is approximately 45 percent of what they should be paid for a season.
All of that to say, MLB has a lot of work to do with the player’s association to make games happen. If the league is indeed shooting for a July 4th start date, they likely have a soft agreement deadline of June 1st. That gives the two sides just five days to get things figured out. That date can obviously change, but the deadline for July games is approaching quickly.