After a marathon negotiating session ending at 3 a.m., talks are set to resume today on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), avoiding for now another delay to the launch of the 2022 regular season.
The talks reportedly yielded some agreements on broad issues, and they ended with players requesting to meet with the MLBPA board to discuss the latest proposal. It’s never seemed like the two sides were as far apart as what was reported in the media–an industry that thrives on conflict, real or not–and during the course of talks it seems like the two sides have made progress. Yes, MLB has a habit of throwing new conditions into the mix–reducing the size of MiLB rosters a great example–and MLBPA has been accused of putting forward some mixed signals at times. But after 17 hours yesterday, the fact that talks have already reconvened this morning is a good sign. From the Washington Post’s Chelsea Janes:
But something was different Tuesday: Until late in the evening, little information about when and where and if the talks were happening had leaked. Until Tuesday night, when the Athletic reported details of an MLB proposal that included the highest CBT thresholds the owners have offered yet, few details of the negotiations had leaked — a far cry from the numbers that seemed to pour out of the negotiating rooms during a long night of talks last week.
The shift was noteworthy because leaked details of offers and the resulting commentary on social media have frustrated those in the room — particularly some on MLB’s side — who felt outside pressure was changing inside outcomes. And when the sides marched toward a deadline like this a week ago in Jupiter, Fla., spokesmen for both sides issued statements by the middle of the day, prematurely blaming the other side for failing to reach a deal by an evening deadline that had not yet arrived. For much of Tuesday, both sides made concerted efforts to keep the details of the negotiations in-house — an indication, perhaps, that progress was being made that neither side wanted to see undone.
How close are they? Here’s one take and another for perspective:
The international draft appears to be the last big remaining obstacle to reach a labor deal today. MLB badly seeks it, and will eliminate all qualifying offers for free agents in return. The union still is opposed as it receives input from players, former players and agents.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) March 9, 2022
Not one player, not a single one, has ever told me that they believe that the solution to this problem would be a draft. This is an extremely complicated issue that needs to be addressed carefully, and many Latin players have been taking to the MLBPA about it, particularly now. https://t.co/1QMFDY1xnp
— Marly Rivera (@MarlyRiveraESPN) March 9, 2022
Should be an interesting day.
RELATED STORIES: As MLB lockout continues, survey shows less interest in game as a result; After talks break down, MLB cancels first two series of regular season; MLB, MLBPA to continue labor talks today; After weekend of negotiations, can MLB and players reach a labor deal?; Start of spring training 2022 delayed again; MLB postpones first week of spring training games; Clock is ticking as spring training, regular season approach; After detour, MLB labor talks to resume Saturday; MLBPA rejects mediation; now what?; No progress on MLB lockout talks as frustrations rise: reports; MLB, players resume talks today; MLB, players meet in person; talks to continue today; MLB, player reps set to meet in person Monday