As we enter another week without a start date for baseball I continue to lose hope. Last week we I felt hopeless, and then hope after Tony Clark and Rob Manfred met, and I’m back to hopeless. MLB proposed a 60-game season. The MLBPA countered with a 70-game season. MLB is declining to counter the 70-game proposal. We’re so close, yet, so far away from a deal.
This article from Buster Olney is his take on what Rob Manfred could say to owners to trigger another counterproposal. Could a 64-game or 66-game deal be the sweet spot that settles the negotiations? Making a deal seems so important, a chance to somewhat repair the hostility that seems present to be looming over the sport we all love. If no counterproposal is made, it’s possible Manfred will institute a 48-game season.
We are all tired of negotiations, and I’ve said this so many time before, but it really feels like we’re getting down to the wire on making a deal. I really hope that this week we some more progress, otherwise when the CBA expires after 2021, I fear the hostility will remain.
In addition to the negotiations looming over the baseball season, there’s something else that made its presence known last week, again. COVID-19 closed down spring training facilities that were being used for workouts. They were closed for deep cleaning last week, and the virus is something that could cancel the baseball season completely, even if an agreement is made between MLB and the MLBPA. No matter what happens with the negotiations, the health and safety of everyone involved in making baseball happen needs to take precedence.
With all of the positive tests that came back for players and staff at training facilities last week, the urgency for a deal to be made is surely there. These positives also mean that if a deal is made early this week, the start date for spring training 2.0 is likely to be pushed back until June 29th at the earliest, cutting the dates available for games down by a few days meaning the 60-games might be the maximum. And if the season gets cut short due to the pandemic? Well, this is an interesting quote from the article, especially for those of you who are against the universal DH.
If the season is shortened, Manfred promised to Clark that the postseason would not be expanded from 10 teams to 16 teams in 2021, and that the DH would not be used in the National League in 2021.
I believe we’ll see a universal DH in 2020, no matter the length of the season, if we have a season.
Okay, this is a bit of a shameless plug. If you haven’t checked our podcast, please do. Adam Peterson and I discuss the proposal from MLB made last week prior to the counter from the MLBPA. We also talk a bit about the Rockies draft picks and the #PurpleRowSim.
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