Sources: If there is no fix on Tuesday, MLB will cancel second week

Major League Baseball plans to cancel another week of regular-season games if it can’t agree to a new collective bargaining agreement with the MLB Players Association by Tuesday night, adding another layer of pressure to already tense negotiations as The league’s lockout is nearing its 100th day, sources familiar with the situation told ESPN.

The urgency of reaching a labor agreement increased Monday when the league suggested that Tuesday was the deadline for a 162-game season and that players would receive full pay and full service time. The union has remained adamant, even after MLB canceled the first week of the season, that 162 games of pay and service time are critical to any deal struck and have threatened to call off the expanded playoffs without them.

While optimism was cautious for the in-person meeting planned for Tuesday, both sides acknowledge that the complicated labor talks could hit a snag if MLB cancels another batch of games, causing pay and service to become another. potentially problematic division.

In a proposal Monday, the league narrowed the gulf in the competitive balance tax, the main issue that divided the sides and led to the cancellation of league games last Tuesday. MLB’s offer passed CBT’s first threshold of $220 million to $228 million, sources said, still short of the $238 million request the union held through Monday in its written response to the league’s earlier proposal. The growth of CBT’s proposal to $238 million in the fifth year of a potential deal remained one of the sticking points for the players, whose proposal seeks a first threshold of $263 million in 2026, the sources said.

MLB’s link to full pay and service on Tuesday, which was first reported by The Athletic, adds a long-awaited pressure point to the talks. While the terms of any collective bargaining agreement can be negotiated, the threat of removing full pay and service from future proposals, as well as the possible retort of expanding the playoffs from 10 to 12 or 14 teams, adds gravity to the Tuesday talks. If an agreement is not reached on Tuesday, the complications of reaching one in the future could become more difficult.

At the same time, ahead of the league’s latest deadline on February 28, which was pushed back to March 1, he suggested that canceling games meant not getting them back and not getting back lost pay and service. MLB has softened that stance, suggesting Monday that if a deal is reached on Tuesday, players could be in spring training camps on Friday and missed games could be made up on bye days and doubleheaders.

The seriousness of the discussions was reflected in the privacy of Monday’s talks and the desire of both sides to avoid leaking proposals, the sources said. Despite all the progress made in recent weeks on proposals such as the minimum salary, expanded playoffs and the draft lottery, there is enough separation to temper enthusiasm for reaching a deal on Tuesday, the sources said.

Between the CBT, the size of the bonus pool and the league’s desire for a 45-day window to implement changes on the field, the ability to close gaps in one day could prove too big for a deal. Additionally, any deal between MLB and the MLBPA is subject to ratification by the owners, who need 23 of 30 teams to sign a deal, and the players.

The tension has defined the talks, which began nearly a year ago, progressed shortly before the league locked out the players on Dec. 2 and have been up and down ever since. The optimism that emanated from the nine-day trading session in late February was short-lived, as the players rejected a league proposal that kept CBT at $220 million for the first three seasons of the deal.

Later that day, Commissioner Rob Manfred canceled the first week of the season after having canceled spring training games. The second week, and perhaps many more, could be in jeopardy if no deal is struck Tuesday, though the slow dance toward a compromise that would bring baseball back leaves a sliver of hope in what has so far been a spring lost.

We would like to thank the writer of this post for this amazing content

Sources: If there is no fix on Tuesday, MLB will cancel second week