‘A Deadline Is A Deadline’: MLB To Have Shortened Season If No Deal On CBA By Monday

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In order for the regular season to begin as scheduled on March 31, Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association will have to come to an agreement by Monday, February 28, or games will begin to be canceled. 

“A deadline is a deadline. Missed games are missed games. Salary will not be paid for those games,” an MLB spokesman said on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, the MLBPA asked for an increase in players’ minimum salaries, with a 2022 proposed salary of $775,000. The proposal also included a $30,000 increase per season over the next four years. MLB countered with an offer of a $640,000 minimum salary and a $10,000 per year increase over the next four years. 

“This was an attempt to respond positively to a series of proposals by the MLBPA that have gone backwards,” an MLB spokesman said. “We have five days to reach an agreement so there is still time for a breakthrough. We are here to get a deal done – but they are going to have to start moving towards us rather than away from us to get this done.”

Both sides are expected to meet again on Thursday. 

The league and the players association have been going back and forth on the details of a new collective bargaining agreement since December following the expiration of the previous CBA. 

On December 1, 2021, Major League Baseball’s collective bargaining agreement expired, resulting in owners locking out the players in order to “jumpstart” negotiations, and the first work stoppage since the 1994-1995 season.

In negotiations for a new CBA, the players and owners have not been able to agree on a few key issues.

For the players, they would like to lower the age and service time of when a player can become a free agent, thus allowing them to sign a large contract earlier in their careers. MLB players would also like to address the practice of teams holding highly-regarded prospects in the Minor Leagues in order to manipulate their service time, as well as organizations “tanking” in order to bottom out and have a minimal payroll.  

In early February, the MLBPA rejected MLB’s offer to bring in a federal mediator in order to negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement.

“Two months after implementing their lockout, and just two days after committing to Players that a counterproposal would be made, the owners refused to make a counter, and instead requested mediation,” the MLBPA said in a statement according to ESPN. “After consultation with our Executive Board, and taking into account a variety of factors, we have declined this request.”

Last Friday, MLB announced the delay of 2022 Spring Training, canceling the first week of games. 

“We regret that, without a collective bargaining agreement in place, we must postpone the start of Spring Training games until no earlier than Saturday, March 5,” the league said in a statement. “All 30 clubs are unified in their strong desire to bring players back to the field and fans back to the stands.

Joe Morgan is the Sports Reporter for The Daily Wire. Most recently, Morgan covered the Clippers, Lakers, and the NBA for Sporting News. Send your sports questions to [email protected]

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