Lockout Rumors: MLB Increased Pre-Arbitration Bonus Pool & Draft Lottery

Originally published by DodgerBlue.com

More than two months into the MLB lockout and with the start of Spring Training already delayed, the league and Players Association (MLBPA) began an important week of collective bargaining agreement (CBA) meetings at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Fla.

It came just over one week after the union reportedly received a 130-page offer from MLB that they were not overly impressed with. Core economics remain the basis of disagreement, along with number of teams for an expanded postseason.

MLB and the MLBA also remain far apart on money that should be contributed to a pre-arbitration bonus pool and the number of players who should qualify.

According to Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sports, MLB increased their pre-arbitration bonus pool and number of teams that would qualify for a Draft lottery in their latest CBA proposal:

MLB raised its pre-arbitration bonus pool by $5 million to $20 million Monday, still leaving a $95 million gap in proposals. It also increased its draft lottery proposal to the top four picks, instead of three from its last offer. The players are seeking a lottery for eight picks. There were no proposals regarding the luxury tax or minimum salaries.

Although MLB again added to their pre-arbitration bonus pool model, it’s far off from the $115 million request last made by the union. The Players Association had previously been at $100 million, but sought to have 20% of second-year players remain in pre-arbitration.

Seeking a larger pre-arbitration bonus pool was accompanied by the union lowering their request from 100% to 80% of players with two years of Major League service time to enter into arbitration. Under the last CBA, 22% qualified for arbitration as Super Two players.

MLB, MLBPA face deadline

Without much progress in negotiations since the lockout began in December, MLB reportedly informed the union of a February 28 deadline to have a new CBA in place to avoid Opening Day being pushed back from March 31.

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