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MLB News: A Very Unpromising Update On Baseball’s CBA Negotiations

Things are not looking good right now.



For the next couple of months, officials from MLB and the Player’s Association will meet to talk about the future. The expiring Collective Bargaining Agreement means that the 2 sides need to find a common ground in order to continue playing in 2022 as scheduled. 

The fear has been for some time that MLB and the Union would have a really tough battle ahead of them. With tension building over the last couple of years and the relationship been the league and players soured, fans knew this could be difficult. 

And it’s proving to be just that. Jon Heyman reported today that at least 1 MLB management source called the negotiations “As bad as I’ve ever seen”, which obviously isn’t ideal. Especially at this stage in the negotiations. 

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Spring Training is supposed to start February 26th of next year between the Cactus and Grapefruit Leagues. But if MLB and the union can’t come together on something, that date could very much be in question. Pushing back the start date for the season would be really bad for both sides though, which could get them to come together on a deal. 

The 2020 MLB season was already hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic. That resulted in owners, the league, and players losing out on a whole lot of money. No one wants any sort of delay to the season, so there is still hope they can get it figured out. 

But it doesn’t sound great. 

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Written by Brook Smith

Brook is the Senior Editor of Dodgers Nation, with several years of experience in sports journalism. He is an avid Dodgers and Lakers fan, and can be spotted fairly often at Dodger Stadium and Staples Center.

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  1. It figures. What can anyone else expect? Many fans left the game as a result of that 1994-95 strike and never all came back. And if another work stoppage happens, so be it.

      • Hello Kirk. Indeed cause Manfred is the worst Commissioner of all time. MLB for almost half a century has been operating with separate rules for each league. But I don’t believe MLB and the MLBPA care too much what might happen with another work stoppage. More fans will be alienated and won’t be to quick to simply forgive and forget. We saw what took place as a result of that horrific 1994 to 1995 strike.

        • Oh, I think they fully understand the implications of a potential strike and NO SEASON. In today’s market with player salaries escalating out of sight, a strike is not going to sit well with a very large group of fans and Paul you are certainly correct on the alienating of fans who will never forget and will not come back. Perhaps the younger fans who were not around in the 1994/95 year will come back, but there is still a large group of us who were around then and have very long memories. I personally will find it very hard to root for or support players that are complaining at the same time they are asking for contracts north of 300 mil. If the owners have any stones at all they will get rid of Manfred. I don’t remember a commissioner who allowed society issues, ie: the Georgia voting reforms to take precedent over our game. This is just my opinion, but looking at Manfred on the stage after Atlanta won the Series made me want to puke. The Braves winning was pure poetic justice for what he did to Atlanta with the All Star game removal. That little wimp looked to me like he could not get out of dodge quick enough.

        • Without a doubt Paul. The ticket prices will have to soar , parking, concessions. People “Even with Socialist hand outs” won’t even be able to afford going to the parks…

          • And after the Braves won games, while handing out the rewards even the fans at that game in Minute Maid were booing him loudly when he got to that podium to speak.
            IMPEACH MANFRED! He is a cancer to this game.

  2. yup – the inmates are running the asylum – owners will not back down. Only thing is they need to be careful so Congress doesn’t remove their favorable status

  3. Who didn’t see this coming? Rant all you want about Manfred – he deserves it – but don’t fail to include Clark. The two deserve each other. There’s so much money in the game that two reasonable people can’t agree on a fair operating practice without rancor and nastiness is mind-boggling. We are seeing the height of selfishness by both sides.

  4. Rule 1: Fire Manfred. Rule 2: Strip the Trashtros of 2017 World Series Championship. Rule 3: DH IN BOTH LEAGUES. Rule 4: Pure free-agency. Rule 5: Expand to Charlotte , Portland, Nashville and Honolulu. Rule 6: Move the A’s to San Jose-NOT Vegas!

  5. Always have been an NL fan. The DH had been a ..whatever. .. Until 2020. Now I have changed my mind and would like to see it in both leagues. That being said, these guys need to hammer out a contract like—yesterday. Should be easy peasy. Multimillionaire primadonas need to be thinking about the fans.

    • That certainly should be the case, but I am sorry to say that I do not believe that is the attitude they will present based on what I saw during labor strife in the early 80’s and of course the disaster of 94/95. Just MHO, but some of the players are going to take a hard line stance and will not listen to reason. Small sample, but remember Steve Howe. Great potential and had his moments, but unfortunately he could not lay off of the white powder. How was given, at last count. I believe 7 different chances to play the game and when labor strife erupted he was one of the first to attack the owners, yet it was the owners who kept giving him chance after chance to play and get his life back on track, but he refused. He is one of only many, Tom Glavine was another who took a real hard line. I think some of the players think they have to adopt the hard line union/employers strife in the early years of labor unions in our country. A lot and I mean a lot of today’s players are chasing the almighty dollar, period. Greinke most famously said he did not care to go to a winner, only to the team that would pay him the most money. Today we have a wimp and a coward for a commissioner and a union head in Clark who appears to be following the arrogance of Fehr and a Marvin Miller wanna be.

  6. The players would like the Designated Hitter expanded to the national league since it will add 15 more high paying jobs. And the owners now would like this standardized because it’s an “insurance policy” as a way to protect “multi-million dollar arms” from injury at the plate as well as reduce hamstring risks while running the bases. A case in point – the Yankees hurler Chien Ming Won. The problem is that the Universal DH became a bargaining chip on both sides. I feel, as a way to show the players and general public that the owners want negotiate in good faith, Rob Manfred should have let the players have the NL DH during the 2021 season. That’s not to say the players receive everything they want either. In fact, they may have to give a little. After all, this is a labor/management issue. But if there is a strike, there are some differences as compared to ordinary bargained for positions. For instance, I doubt there will be a picket line (although I believe the umpires picketed the four ball parks during the two League Championship Series many years ago). And from management’s standpoint, they risk losing the antitrust exemption – something that the other professional sports leagues don’t have. Notice that no where in this discussion did I mention about the DH and its impact on strategy – the argument on going since its inception. This is purely about money!

  7. Both sides are greedy.
    Both sides make an absolutely stupid amount of money.
    Neither side really cares about “The Game”
    Manfred is doing just what the owners want him to do, following Bud Selig who I think injured himself a couple of times patting himself on his back.
    Both sides are doing what they believe is in their economic interest, albeit with a bit of ego thrown in for good measure.

    Sounds like a recipe for success!

    • Don’t forget the Manfred regime continuing their Political racial hatred and Political theater. The players Union better stand for the personal choice of the athletes as well, especially the forced injection Mandate , and remember folks a Mandate is NOT a Law, repeat after me, a Mandate is NOT a law…

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