We’re starting a big week for Major League Baseball with a suspension likely coming on Thursday that will freeze the squads. Can the Atlanta Braves do something first?
There is still much work to be done for the Atlanta Braves this off-season, but those plans could be put on hold as the MLB and MLBPA are unlikely to reach a new agreement before the CBA expires on Dec. 1 at 11:59 p.m. ET.
It’s more a matter of when (what I just told you) than if At this point. The only question is whether or not transactions will be frozen along with the lock – and most believe it will.
Because of this, we are likely to see a flurry of movement for free agents looking to close a deal over the next few days.
Especially since the non-posting deadline is being postponed so that players who are not posted will have the opportunity to sign with a team before the suspension goes into effect.
Hope to see a big announcement from the Braves before Wednesday night.
Good lockout: what is the argument?
Both sides did a really good job of keeping negotiations out of the media, which is wise; although it makes our job a little more difficult what to write about.
This article on The Athletic (Paywall) has some details on the main issues on the player side.
If you want to reduce it to one thing, it’s money – that is ultimately what these negotiations are always about.
Players want fair compensation for younger players who get paid so little at a time that is so precious to their team.
I am very much against it as it would kill small market teams that can only compete by getting a great performance from young players who are admitted to work or arbitration. The Tampa Bay Rays would pretty much cease to exist.
It would also lead to young players leaving the team that developed them far too soon. You call me old school, but I love players who come through an organization and stick with it for a long time.
In addition, it is simply not fair to the team that designed or signed them (invested a lot of money at the time), trained them, “raised” them and then played for two years in the big leagues that they can no longer afford they have to swap to a large market team.
Perhaps increase the minimum salary and allow them to enter arbitration sooner, but I wouldn’t want to see that system completely overhauled.
The other thing the players want me to be more on board with is less refueling from the teams. The players want it so the teams will spend more money on the players, but I want it because I want to see a league where more teams try to win every year.
I would advocate a minimum wage floor where teams have to spend at least $ 100 million per season.
Last year there were 12 teams that ended the season on total payroll less than $ 100 million – that’s ridiculous even for small market teams.
Only two of those teams made it into the postseason – one was the Milwaukee Brewers, whose paycheck was $ 99 million, and the other was the Rays, who are just something special.
Other things will be negotiated like the DH, the pace of play and the extended postseason, but these are by and large subordinate and are only used as bargaining chips by both sides to try to get what they want.
Hopefully we will get more details after the lockdown officially begins, but stay tuned as this could be the busiest week of the MLB offseason.