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MLB lockout to end under tentative deal; Baseball is Back!

MLBThough there are some final details to hash out, several media outlets are reporting that MLB and the MLB Players Association reached agreement on a new five-year Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), with players reporting to camps as soon as tomorrow.

This ends the second-longest work stoppage in MLB history, which began Dec. 1, 2021. There were plenty of pessimistic souls who didn’t see the potential of a deal (i.e., Keith Olbermann, who predicted the entire season would be scrapped), but with progress coming in fits and spurts over the last few weeks, we’re now arrived at a place where the 2022 regular season will begin on April 7 (exactly one week after the original March 31 Opening Day) and players could arrive in camps as early as tomorrow, with free agency launching as soon as tonight.

There have been plenty of stumbling blocks during negotiations, with the most recent MLB’s desire to implement an International draft. Players themselves are split on the notion, but it is a complicated issue, so the decision was made to study and negotiate that issue separately.

In a way we are lucky to have a deal and that it’s passed a first vote from players. Which leads to an interesting development–the eight members of the MLBPA executive subcommittee, which includes five Scott Boras clients, voted against the deal; the 30 player reps, on the other hand, voted 26-4 to move forward with the deal.

We will have a full accounting of the deal later. Everyone did appear to get something they wanted: the minimum wage is now $700,000, eventually rising to $780,000; a revamped draft lottery; and a National League DH. The season will launch April 7 and be extended by three games; there will be a full 162-game season, with nine-inning doubleheaders to fill the schedule. No more extra-innings games beginning with a runner on second, by the way, and potentially larger bases and a ban on shifts down the road.

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