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What Will it Take for MLB to Return to Action?

MLB locked out the players over two and a half months ago, and there has been hardly any progress in the labor negotiations.

This article is the fourth in our series detailing the critical issues facing Major League Baseball as the players and MLB owners renegotiate the Collective Bargaining Agreement.  Today, we look at the current state of negotiations.  You can find the previous installment here.

MLB announced on Friday that Spring Training is officially delayed until March 5, two and a half months after the owners locked out the players on December 2.  The two sides have sparsely exchanged proposals over that time frame, though they are expected to meet multiple times this week.  Let’s go over where the league and the union currently stand now that regular season games are in jeopardy.

Proposals On the Table…and Off

The two sides have agreed to implement a universal designated hitter going forward, but it is hard to find common ground elsewhere, especially on the major issues.

In order to reduce widespread tanking, the players are asking for an eight-team draft lottery.  The league has countered with three, so we will see some form of a lottery in the future.  The small-ish gap and the fact that this is a lower priority means the exact number will be resolved rather painlessly.  It is unclear whether a lottery would apply to the 2022 draft when teams didn’t know there would be one when the standings were finalized.  At the moment, the Baltimore Orioles hold the first pick.


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