Lockout Negotiations: MLB Informed Players Association They Have ‘Run Out Of Ideas’ In CBA Talks

Originally published by DodgerBlue.com

MLB and the Players Association (MLBPA) have met daily this week in effort to negotiate a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) ahead of the league’s February 28 deadline. Failing to reach a deal by that date will result in regular season games being canceled and not rescheduled.

Despite team owners recently doubling down on their stance, little progress has been made in recent discussions. In the latest round of talks, the union reportedly dropped its ask for first-year players to be awarded service time and mitigated proposed Draft penalties for losing teams.

The two sides still remain far apart on these issues and other important topics, casting doubt they will come to an agreement in the next three days.

In Thursday’s CBA meeting, MLB reportedly told the MLBPA they have exhausted all options and are frustrated with the players, per Michael Silverman of the Boston Globe:

Source: Players upset w how far apart sides remain, adding that MLB negotiators told union they have run out of ideas and that owners are upset with players.
Players made two moves toward owners on draft order and service time manipulation.
Talks resume Friday.

— Michael Silverman (@MikeSilvermanBB) February 24, 2022

According to Silverman, part of MLB’s frustration stems from the Players Association not addressing all of the key issues in their proposals:

MLB spokesperson: Part of owners’ frustration related to not knowing players’ stand on number of issues owners have made proposals on, that owners want to see comprehensive package from union, like owners have done for players.

— Michael Silverman (@MikeSilvermanBB) February 24, 2022

MLB and the MLBPA have largely focused on establishing a pre-arbitration bonus pool and Draft lottery in recent negotiations, but one notable topic that hasn’t been brought up is the luxury tax threshold.

The union has asked for the luxury tax threshold to increase to $245 million this year, then $252 million, $259 million, $266 million and $273 million over the lifetime of a new CBA. The league has not gotten close to the figures as of last week, proposing totals of $214 million, $214 million, $216 million, $218 million and $222 million.

To help CBA negotiations, MLB again requested the involvement of a federal mediator earlier this week, which was rejected by the MLBPA. The two sides will meet again on Friday and look to make meaningful progress, or else risk the start of the regular season being delayed.

What do MLB and MLBPA agree on?

During a press conference at the conclusion of owners meetings in Orlando, commissioner Rob Manfred relayed MLB and the MLBPA were in agreement on implementing a universal designated hitter, creating a Draft lottery system, increasing the minimum salary and bonus pool for pre-arbitration players.

Of course, that is all informal unless implemented as part of a new CBA.

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