It’s Tuesday, Athletics Nation!
We don’t have a CBA deal yet, but it’s close.
Yesterday was a long, long day for negotiations. Starting in the morning and continuing past midnight, MLB and MLBPA met a total of thirteen times over sixteen hours before coming to today’s negotiation overtime.
While things seemed like the season’s postponement was inevitable through yesterday morning, the mood shifted in the afternoon as details creeped out and headway was made. One of the initial breaks was actual discussion of the Competitive Balance Tax and some rapid trading of figures. As the evening took over the scuttlebutt shifted to a holdup between the players not wanting to expand playoffs past 12 teams, while the owners were looking for 14 teams in an expanded postseason.
Night grew closer and there was a general optimism growing that the league’s (fairly arbitrary) pre-March deadline could be met. Every time negotiators made a trip across the stadium for another meeting, baseball writers would light up with hope, as well as photos of polo shirt-clad executives.
Commissioner Rob Manfred on way back: “We’re working at it” pic.twitter.com/vasSITXu7q— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) February 28, 2022
Just before midnight Florida time, the biggest break of the day seemed to happen, as USA TODAY’s Bob Nightengale tweeted out a series of compromises made during the eleventh meeting: a 12 team expanded postseason, a CBT similar in structure to the last CBA’s, and a little free verse to top it all off.
From there things quieted down a bit, it seemed like a deal was close, but not a sure thing. As midnight approached the west coast, and after a couple more meetings, both sides agreed to call it a night. MLB bumped their deadline for cancelling games to 5pm ET today, so things look like a finalized deal will very likely come together soon.
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MLB News & Interest
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Best of Twitter
Here’s a breakdown of where a lot of the numbers sit after last night
MLBPA doesn’t feel any major area done. MLB’s CBT starts at $220m, prearb bonus pool at $20 m, and minimum salary at $675k. Players want higher numbers.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) March 1, 2022
MLB’s CBT proposal:
New: MLB is OK not increasing CBT tax rates
Looking at what’s left to talk about
Union still believes sides are apart on luxury tax, minimum salaries and the bonus pool. Pretty clear at this point both sides are trying to get this done, which is the best news.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) March 1, 2022
How CBT breaks down compared to the past
If the CBT penalties are agreed upon as @BNightengale reported that's a huge issue out of the way. The base tax threshold is a big remaining one for MLBPA. From 2011-19, the tax threshold grew by just 15.7%. Meanwhile, MLB revenues grew 63%. https://t.co/q7EJls49tm pic.twitter.com/eXx80htIys— Travis Sawchik (@Travis_Sawchik) March 1, 2022
A late night homage
Capping off Black History Month with the dual threat of Blue Moon Odom