Major League Baseball owners unanimously approved the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, salvaging 162 games for 2018. The deal was struck after weeks of hard negotiations between management and players’ representatives which could have cost MLB more than $1 billion in lost revenue if it remained unresolved.
The “cba baseball” is a new collective bargaining agreement that was ratified by the MLB owners. The deal salvages the 162 game season and includes changes to free agency, luxury taxes, draft pick compensation and revenue sharing.
3:26 PM EST ET
ESPN’s Jeff Passan
- MLB insider on ESPN
- Author of “The Arm: Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of Sports’ Most Valuable Commodity,” “The Arm: Inside the Billion-Dollar Mystery of Sports’ Most Valuable Commodity”
The owners of Major League Baseball voted overwhelmingly Thursday to accept a new collective bargaining agreement, ending the league’s 99-day player lockout and preserving a 162-game season that will begin April 7, according to individuals familiar with the situation.
With the conclusion of baseball’s second-longest labor dispute, spring training camps will start on Sunday, free-agent signings may begin on Thursday night, and baseball will seek to return to some kind of routine after months of tense discussions.
The agreement was reached as discussions heated up this week, when the league proposed bridging a big difference in the competitive-balance tax, a crucial sticking point in the final stages of negotiations. Negotiations were threatened by a disagreement over an international draft, prompting the league to “remove from the calendar” two more series on Wednesday, but the difficulties were addressed Thursday morning, and the league handed a comprehensive proposal to the union, which it agreed to accept.
According to ESPN, the final vote by the MLBPA’s eight executive subcommittee members and 30 player representatives was 26-12 in support of the deal.
Baseball’s underlying economics were front and center in the labor discussions, despite the fact that the basic agreement covers practically all elements of the game. In addition to the new CBT, which will increase from $230 million to $244 million over the course of the five-year agreement, the minimum salary for players with less than three years of major league service will increase from $570,500 to $700,000, eventually reaching $780,000, and a bonus pool worth $50 million will be distributed among younger players who have yet to reach salary arbitration.
The MLBPA agreed to the expansion of the playoffs to 12 teams, which was proposed by MLB. For the first time, player clothes will include advertising, with patches on jerseys and decals on batting helmets.
Other aspects of the agreement include:
• In the 2023 season, MLB will have a 45-day window to adopt rule changes, including a pitch clock, a shift ban, and expanded bases.
• The emergence of the designated hitter in the National League.
• A draft lottery has been created in order to discourage tanking.
• Incentives for draft picks should prevent service-time manipulation
• Setting a limit on how many times a player may be optioned to the minors in a single season.
Last year, talks on a new fundamental agreement started slowly, building up to the expiry of the existing version on December 1st. The league and the union had made little headway in the months leading up to the lockout, which was declared shortly after midnight on December 2 by commissioner Rob Manfred. A 43-day stalemate occurred, and by the time spring training opened in mid-February, the disparities between the parties had become large enough that the prospect of losing regular-season games had increased.
Manfred’s suspension of Opening Day a week ago enraged players, who were hoping to make major income gains beyond 2022 following a 2016 deal that resulted in severe economic implications. Despite rising earnings that peaked at $10.7 billion in 2019, player wages have decreased over the last four seasons. The almost quadrupling of franchise valuations over the previous two basic agreements became a rallying cry for players.
Simultaneously, the league, comfortable with the established economic arrangement, resisted the substantial gains the players had anticipated to achieve. While the guarantees for younger players totaled about $100 million, the game’s uncapped format lets clubs to spend less on older players to offset the extra expenditures.
In the end, baseball, which is still looking for its place in an entertainment and athletic world with limitless watching alternatives, avoided the doomsday scenario of a lengthy labor dispute that would have wiped out a significant portion of the season. Now comes a frenetic free-agent season, during which star shortstop Carlos Correa, first baseman Freddie Freeman, shortstop Trevor Story, pitcher Clayton Kershaw, third baseman Kris Bryant, and others are expected to sign. Matt Olson, Matt Chapman, and a handful of starting pitchers might all be traded by the Oakland Athletics.
While a March 31 Opening Day seems unlikely, baseball will return in early April with the hopes of five years of labor peace, prosperity, and the eradication of the winter’s ugly.
The “mlb free agents 2022” is a problem that has been present for a while. The MLB owners ratified the new CBA, which will help salvage 162 games in 2021.
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