In the middle of negotiations for a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA), MLB and the Players Association keep discussing a number of topics, one of them being service time manipulation.
As the Jarred Kelenic – Seattle Mariners fiasco last year taught us, players don’t like to have their service time manipulated because it means delaying their access to free agency, or the right to negotiate in the open market with any team.
MLB players are eligible for free agency after six years of service time, yet MLB teams often delay a call-up until a certain date to gain an extra year of control.
It’s evil, and it’s a practice that the union hates.
Attempts to negotiate an earlier free agency were unsuccessful, though.
Service Time Manipulation Needs To End
But the league is apparently using service time to try and manipulate the union.
“Sources: MLB, MLBPA lawyers met today, planning to meet again tomorrow. MLB has suggested Tuesday as deadline, in its eyes, for 3 things: play 162 games, and for players to get full pay & full service time. But, pay/service/sked can’t be unilaterally chosen—needs to be negotiated,” The Athletic’s Evan Drellich tweeted yesterday.
Former MLB player and current media personality Trevor Plouffe roasted the league in a tweet on Tuesday, criticizing service time manipulation.
I called not giving players a full year of service time due to the lockout “evil” today on our show. And I stand by that. It’s truly diabolical to dangle that during a negotiation where you already admit to service time manipulation. https://t.co/JiHdRORJiZ
— Coach Trev (@trevorplouffe) March 8, 2022
“I called not giving players a full year of service time due to the lockout “evil” today on our show. And I stand by that. It’s truly diabolical to dangle that during a negotiation where you already admit to service time manipulation,” he said.
He has a point: the players are fighting not to have their clock manipulated, and the league is trying to force things and use service time as a bargaining tool in a negative way.