MLB Owners Refuse to Make Concessions as More Cancellations Loom
Major League Baseball continues to head off a cliff and no one seems interested in steering it to safety. On Sunday we got another day of negotiations and another day of accomplishing very little.
On Sunday, the players presented a new offer to MLB and the league's owners, led by commissioner Rob Manfred, essentially rejected it out of hand. Then MLB went to its classic position of "the players actually made a worse offer" when the rest of us know that's not true.
What Caplin is essentially saying there is, "While we haven't moved towards the players at all, we were hoping they'd move towards us again so we can get everything we want." The players have moved on plenty so far in negotiations, giving the owners expanded playoffs, advertisements on uniforms and keeping the same service time restrictions before free agency. All the players are asking for is a raise to the minimum salary, a bigger pre-arbitration bonus pool and changes to the luxury tax threshold to encourage spending.
Basically the players want younger and minimum salaried players to get more money and to encourage more spending in the sport overall. None of that is a crazy ask. The owners refuse to budge.
Now we're on the verge of more game cancellations and the owners clearly don't care. The first two series of the season have already been wiped out and more are certainly on the way. It's looking increasingly likely we could see a month of games wiped out.
Until this pointless lockout, baseball had been gaining a ton of momentum and revenues were skyrocketing. The sport currently features an insane group of exciting young players the likes of which it hasn't seen in generations and there are more on the way. Yet the owners are willing to stunt that growth to make a point over a few dollars. It's utterly insane.
The owners have the power to stop this any time. They refuse. And the fans are left to suffer.