When team owners and the MLB Players Association failed to come to terms during a last-ditch meeting, the sport was thrust into a lockout once the 2017-2021 collective bargaining agreement expired at 9 p.m. PT on December 1.
With trades, free agency and other business frozen, six weeks passed before MLB and the union held another meeting to discuss a new CBA. MLB reportedly proposed a new formula that would take the place of the current arbitration system, expanded on its draft lottery concept and outlined means to encourage teams to include top prospects on their Opening Day roster.
The league’s proposal reportedly did not sit well with players, who are intent on seeing changes to the luxury tax threshold and service-time manipulation, among other areas of focus.
According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the union is preparing a counteroffer and are scheduled for another round of CBA discussions with MLB on Monday, January 24:
The Major League Baseball Players Association plans to make an in-person labor proposal to the league on Monday, sources told ESPN, countering MLB’s offer last week that did little to loosen the gridlock that has gripped the sport after the league locked out the players Dec. 2.
That the second meeting since the lockout began will be in person is encouraging, however there’s no denying plenty of acrimony exists between the two parties. Tension has seemingly undercut actual negotiations taking place up to this point.
While there still is time for a new CBA to be agreed to, the longer the lockout extends the more likely it becomes Spring Training will not begin on time. The next major domino to fall would then be Opening Day of the 2022 regular season, which is set for March 31.
Report: MLB not yet discussing potential rule changes
With core economics the focal point of CBA talks thus far, MLB reportedly has not yet included potential rule changes.
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