In this day and age, it has become increasingly clear that MLB owners care more about keeping as much money as they possibly can than actually investing in their teams and trying to win.
This is a common practice with small-market teams, who granted, don’t have near the resources as bigger-market teams, but still have owners who are quite rich and some who are unwilling to invest in their product.
But this is far from the beginning of owners being unwilling to spend money.
On Twitter, a St. Louis Cardinals fan posted an old quote from team legend Dizzy Dean, who was lowballed by Branch Rickey after a dominant 1935 season.
"I won 28 games in 1935 and I couldn't believe my eyes when the Cardinals sent me a contract with a cut in salary. Mr Rickey said I deserved a cut because I didn't win thirty games." -Dizzy Dean #STLCards pic.twitter.com/elIio2FCJX
— Augie Nash (@AugieNash) January 3, 2023
For context, Dean won 28 games in 1935, but when offered a new contract, he was surprised to find that Rickey wanted to cut his pay.
This is simply the root of owners’ unwillingness to pay the money that a player deserves or invest in their product.
This is nothing new, and even the return to play negotiations in 2020 weren’t the beginning of it.
For generations, there have been certain owners who wanted to keep all the money to themselves and didn’t understand that the players are a major part of what helps them keep the money in their pockets.
That hasn’t gone away and it isn’t going away anytime soon, unfortunately, even in the aftermath of the most recent work stoppage.
The Cincinnati Reds and the Oakland Athletics are perfect examples of this.
And so, to this day we’re left wondering when these owners will learn, or even if they will learn.