Happy Thursday, Athletics Nation!
Let’s get the quick stuff done first regarding the ongoing lockout:
- MLB and MLBPA met again yesterday for a few hours.
- MLB offered a new proposal with a few minor concessions.
- It’s looking more and more like we will lose games from this season unless one side moves on the Competitive Balance Tax.
- They’ll be meeting again today, and you can expect a similar result.
Cool, now that that’s all out of the way, we can get into something a little more positive.
There has been a growing number of special event games and series put on by the league lately. In the last decade the Little League Classic, Field of Dreams game, and Players’ Weekend games were added to a yearly rotation. That’s all on top of the unique location history of the 2016 Fort Bragg game, as well as the London, Japan, and Australia games played in recent years. While many of these games have ties to important events and pop culture, or to expand the popularity of the sport internationally, a new potential game could honour a part of baseball history not as often enshrined by MLB.
Writing for NJ.com, Brendan Kuty profiled the $94 million renovation of Hinchliffe Stadium in Patterson, New Jersey, as well as MLB’s interest in hosting games there honouring the Negro Leagues. Hinchliffe is one of a few remaining stadiums that served as home to Negro League teams, with the New York Black Yankees and New York Cubans playing there in the 1930s. The renovation is already well in-progress, and when complete would provide over 9,000 seats for events — larger than the stadium erected for the Field of Dreams game in Iowa last year.
The Negro Leagues have not always been treated by MLB with the same level of historic significance as the National and American Leagues, but they’ve received increasing recognition recently. In 2020, MLB officially recognized the 1920-48 Negro Leagues as Major Leagues, and celebrated the Leagues’ centennial anniversary through a patch worn by all players. A game or series in honour of the Negro Leagues played at a historic stadium is a great way to honour a very important part of baseball’s past, and to keep the history of the Negro Leagues alive.
- Hall: Tyler Soderstrom is A’s only Top 100 prospect, for now
- Burbank: Play Ball: Momentum builds for new Oakland A’s ballpark, but hard work remains
- Rotman: Top 10 Mets trade targets when the lockout ends (Manaea, Montas, Chapman, and Sonny Gray all mentioned)
- Landry: Explore Midland’s Momentum Bank Ballpark
MLB News & Interest
- Kuty: MLB eyes N.J.’s historic Negro League stadium for Field of Dreams game
- Axisa: MLB considering historic Negro League stadium for future Field of Dreams-style game, per report
- Olney: A hurricane of activity: 8 things that will happen once the MLB lockout ends
- Rogers: How can the MLB lockout end? Baseball insiders weigh in on potential compromises
- Jaffe: Even with Face-to-Face Meetings, a New CBA isn’t Getting Much Closer
- Longenhagen, Goldstein, and Taruskin: FanGraphs 2022 Top 100 Prospects
- Today in Baseball History
Best of Twitter
Some insight on why the league may be pushing for mediation
MLB may have asked for mediation because of internal communication problems/misunderstandings. Owners may have mistakenly believed that a lockout would pressure players to give in. Now that they haven't, they don't know how to get out of the box they've built for themselves. 1/ https://t.co/8bGOJQK0B0— (((EugeneFreedman))) (@EugeneFreedman) February 23, 2022
More from a player’s perspective
It’s fascinating MLB setting a hard deadline to play a full season for Monday. They locked us out. Had barely any contact for two months post lockout. Have yet to make a single good faith offer to even initiate real conversations to get a deal done. Just make a real offer .— Alex Wood (@Awood45) February 24, 2022
Some insight into Max Scherzer’s negotiation snacks
I already loved Max Scherzer but rolling into the bargaining sessions that will shape the sport for the next however many years with Cool Ranch Doritos in hand has elevated him to a whole other level of respect in my book https://t.co/XBzOG2nSfd— Céspedes Family BBQ (@CespedesBBQ) February 23, 2022
Speaking of Scherzer
A fan shouted to Max Scherzer as he got into his car following the conclusion of today’s meetings: “We got a deal?”— James Wagner (@ByJamesWagner) February 23, 2022
Scherzer: “Not yet.”#journalism
Hot pavement > hot stove
February 23, 2022
Another stylized wallpaper for Black History Month, this time with six-time All-Star Vida Blue
A's Hall of Famer Vida Blue’s longest win streak as an Oakland A's pitcher was 10 games from April 9 to May 23, 1971.#BlackHistoryMonth | #WallpaperWednesday pic.twitter.com/Ju1HQ1jRrD— Oakland A's (@Athletics) February 23, 2022