MLB and the Players Association are still bargaining to see if there can be baseball soon, or if fans have to keep waiting.
Regarding core economic issues, both sides have actually moved a lot in the last few hours and are actually close to agreeing.
The union, according to Evan Drellich of The Athletic, moved to $65 million on pre-arbitration pool and $232 million, $235 million, $240 million, $245 million, and $250 million on the competitive balance tax (CBT) thresholds over the deal.
They also moved on the minimum salary distribution.
On minimum salaries: MLBPA now starts at $710k and goes up to $780k. Players were recently starting at $725k, had dipped to $715k before this offer. MLB remains at $700k to start, finishing at $770k.
— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) March 9, 2022
However, the owners introduced a new concept in negotiations, or at least one that wasn’t getting much attention by specialized media until now: an international draft.
MLB wants to replace the current international free agent signing period with a draft, to better regulate and control some of the irregularities found in the system.
The problem is not so much the draft per se: it’s the moment to present the idea, just when we all thought there could be a deal looming.
The International Draft, Proposed By Owners, Is Complicating Things
And the other thing complicating matters is that owners want the international draft to start in 2024, and some players believe that’s too soon.
Many players don’t like the idea at all, which is why it hasn’t been approved and it’s highly unlikely to go through.
Seattle Mariners’ specialized site Lookout Landing shared some of the fans’ frustrations.
“We’re on deadline, what, four? And only hearing now about MLB wanting to institute an international draft? Be suspicious,” they wrote.
We’re on deadline, what, four? And only hearing now about MLB wanting to institute an international draft? Be suspicious.
— Lookout Landing (@LookoutLanding) March 9, 2022
One can’t help but think the league is deliberately proposing this now to gain some leverage over players.
Whether that’s true or not remains up for debate, but their timing to propose the international draft is definitely not the best.
The chances of seeing a CBA deal on Wednesday are becoming slim, at best.NEXT: MLB Fans Remember When The Rays Came Into Existence