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  • CBA Musings (11/26): What’s Happening and What’s Next?


    Ted Schwerzler

    Thanksgiving is behind us, Black Friday is upon us, and a work stoppage could commence as soon as next week. There’s been some movement regarding the Major League Baseball CBA discussion the last few days, so let’s get you caught up.

    Image courtesy of Troy Taormina, USA TODAY Sports

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    Arguably the most impactful bit of information came out on Tuesday night when baseball insider Ken Rosenthal tweeted news about the arbitration deadline. Initially slated for December 2nd, MLB and the Players’ Union agreed to move the non-tender deadline to November 30. This is important because those arbitration-eligible players who will be sent to free agency now have roughly 24 hours to negotiate deals with clubs before the assumed lockout.

    With the current Major League Baseball CBA set to expire on December 1 at 11:59 pm Eastern Time, non-tendered players will become free agents at 8 pm Eastern Time on November 30. A flood of new free agents will hit the market, and both sides will be scrambling to negotiate deals before a shutdown occurs.

    The flip side of this is that Major League Baseball, and more succinctly the owners, benefit by flooding the market with free agents. They would hope that players are rushed into lesser compensation or are pushed to accept deals at a lower valuation following a lockout filled with future uncertainty.

    On November 22, J.P Hoornstra posted this piece for the OC Register, noting that the MLB Players Association has prepared a lockout guide for players and agents. In the event of a lockout, all Major League Baseball activity will cease. This refers to workouts, transactions, and other scheduled items relating to the sport at its highest level.

    Because Minor League Baseball is not represented by the MLBPA or under the umbrella of the MLB CBA, minor league activities will go on without change.

    Bobby Nightengale of the Cincinnati Enquirer posted a great FAQ this week with regards to all things lockout. What takes place during the shutdown? What are the key points of contention? What could be expected to come from it all? It’s worth a look. 

    This outcome has been assumed for some time but became even more evident before the Covid-shortened 2020 Major League Baseball season. As the owners attempted to negotiate in public and paint the players in a bad light, workplace tensions grew higher than ever. While we’re ultimately dealing with billionaires and millionaires, Rob Manfred is presiding over a sport that bounced back from its last lockout due to the boom that was the Steroid Era. Manfred is the figurehead of the owners, and while he’s done their bidding during his time in office, it’s been mainly to the detriment of fans, players, and the sport as a whole.

    It’s time for both sides to bridge the gap and find a way to move forward. The MLBPA needs stronger leadership than it’s seen from Tony Clark, and MLB needs anything better than what Manfred has given thus far. A week from now, we’ll be discussing the first days of the shutdown, and the only hope is that it remains brief. Don’t hold your breath.

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    Manfred and owners are a detriment to the game of baseball , they are losing the loyal fan base ....

     

    I am on the players side and I hope they can bring back the strategy of baseball and get rid of manfreds stupid new rules of the game that don't speed up the game .... 

    They are going to add the DH to the national league  , is that going to speed up the national league games , I don't think so ...

    I like pitchers hitting and some pitchers are good hitters ,, the cost of doing business will go up with the owners adding the DH and the games will be longer ..

    I don't mind the DH but it's really against what Manfred and the owners have been trying to accomplish by changing the rules .. 

    They are the ones ruining the game ..

    Sign buck for the bucks pohlad 

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    I hope we see a couple more signings before the lockout to end on a positive note. Because very soon all fans will have to read for baseball news is the lockout. I don’t expect much progress to be made on that front until March. It’s going to be a long winter… 

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    17 hours ago, Blyleven2011 said:

    Manfred and owners are a detriment to the game of baseball , they are losing the loyal fan base ....

     

    I am on the players side and I hope they can bring back the strategy of baseball and get rid of manfreds stupid new rules of the game that don't speed up the game .... 

    They are going to add the DH to the national league  , is that going to speed up the national league games , I don't think so ...

    I like pitchers hitting and some pitchers are good hitters ,, the cost of doing business will go up with the owners adding the DH and the games will be longer ..

    I don't mind the DH but it's really against what Manfred and the owners have been trying to accomplish by changing the rules .. 

    They are the ones ruining the game ..

    Sign buck for the bucks pohlad 

    I agree that the owners are ruining the game, but the players need to accept some responsibility too. Also, I agree with universal DH, just do away with the new extra inning rule, quit messing with the baseball, and I think the game was better when we had AL and NL  exclusive umps. Maybe because the batteries could get to know them better and vice versa, but it seemed to me that the game took a turn for the worse when they changed that rule.

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    1 hour ago, Karbo said:

    I agree that the owners are ruining the game, but the players need to accept some responsibility too. Also, I agree with universal DH, just do away with the new extra inning rule, quit messing with the baseball, and I think the game was better when we had AL and NL  exclusive umps. Maybe because the batteries could get to know them better and vice versa, but it seemed to me that the game took a turn for the worse when they changed that rule.

    I agree that the umpiring has been worse since they abandoned the AL umpires and NL umpires and grouped them into one union  ,,, 

    If the umpires would stand directly over the catcher they would probably call a better game behind the plate,  also they should have their eyes checked everyday .... the calls on the bases are poor too ...

    Remember the no hitter that wasn't when Joyce( firstbase umpire ) called the guy safe and he was out by 2 steps ...

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    We had a very frustrating season last year.  It looks to be a gloomy hot (cold) stove league with a lockout looming.  Manfred seems hell bent on ruining baseball.  He is by far the worst commissioner I have seen.  I'm hoping beyond hope that both sides come to their senses and get this thing settled soon.  Baseball cannot afford a prolonged lockout.  People across the country have faced severe hardships the past couple of years due to the pandemic.  It's shameful, arrogant, insensitive, and irresponsible.  Billionaires and millionaires arguing over how to split the golden pot of the owners is a slap in the face to their fans and all working people.  It's disgraceful!! 

     

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    5 hours ago, LastOnePicked said:

    Ted, I really appreciate these updates. Thanks for aggregating and summarizing the need-to-know stuff on the CBA. I hope it all goes as smoothly as possible.

    Times two. Really great to have an easy source of info. 

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    I have been a strong defender of the front office since they arrived.  I truly felt they were the wave of the future and would lead the Twins to respectability.  But, today - Sunday, November 28th, I formally raise my white flag and surrender.  Between the inactivity regarding the Buxton extension, the apparent disinterest in pursuing any significant free agents, and the total lack of information from this front office, I give up.  I see no path forward.  I see no sense of urgency (or even interest) being shown by the front office.  I also see no way the Twins are relevant in baseball while they are running things.  Even this website is becoming boring because we have nothing to discuss.  Instead, we resort to talking about past no hitters, the Cooperstown chances for mediocre former Twins, and hoping for a humorous article from Randballs.  I will continue checking in but it will be done as a "bottom of my list" event, not a highlight of the day.  I live in Maine now and I may have to look into supporting the Red Sox (they signed Michael Wacha yesterday - at least they did something).  Please don't make me do that!!!

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    On 11/27/2021 at 7:15 AM, mikelink45 said:

    Black Friday for the Mets - MLB.com reports that Mark Cahna, Eduardo Escobar, and Starling Marte are signing with the team.  None of them were on Twins radar as far as I can see, but signing continue at a rapid pace for many teams - not ours. 

    There are 30 teams in the league, and only about 3 or 4 have made signings, outside resigning their own players.  Top FA, for most part have not signed.  If we were signing lower level FA would you be happy they were making signings or would you be mad they made lower level signings?  Top guys will not sign until new CBA. 

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    It is both the players and owners fault the labor stoppage is about to happen.  Really it goes back to when baseball had the reserve clause not allowing FA.  Since then, the players have always wanted no salary cap, and have fought a long time for no cap and have players earn as much as they could.  The fact that owners are not wanting to share in the wealth, like in other leagues that affects things too. 

    Main area of contention is the service time, and QO.  Until the last few years, neither was a huge deal for players, but mid-level players are no longer getting the deals they used to, and it is making the majority upset.  

    I have advocated the players should agree to a cap with a floor.  Players have been against the cap because teams used to throw crazy money at them, but as teams stopped doing that, the service time and QO has prevented players from earning larger sums of money.  Also, without a floor spending, many teams are stocking roster with young guys if they are not looking to compete to keep money low.  

    The rules that Manfred has been looking into is not a huge issue for either side.  It all comes down to fact players have felt owners and GM's have not been paying out contracts like they used to and believe the owners are basically agreeing not to bid against each other, keeping contracts lower.  Of course the mega deals will always be there, this is more about the mid-level guys. 

     

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    4 hours ago, Trov said:

    There are 30 teams in the league, and only about 3 or 4 have made signings, outside resigning their own players.  Top FA, for most part have not signed.  If we were signing lower level FA would you be happy they were making signings or would you be mad they made lower level signings?  Top guys will not sign until new CBA. 

    1. Semien a Ranger
    2. Marte, Escobar, Canha to Mets
    3. Marlins sign Avisail Garcia
    4. Rays sign Kluber
    5. Mariners trade for Frazier
    6. Cardinals sign Metz
    7. Houston signs Verlander
    8. Red Sox sign Wacha
    9. Cleveland signed Sandy Leon
    10. Angels signed Loup and Thor 
    11. Giants signed DeScafani
    12. LA Dodgers sign Heaney
    13. Detroit signed Rodriguez
    14. Nationals signed Alcides Escobar
    15. Toronto signed Yimi Garcia
    16. White Sox signed Kendall Graveman
    17. Pirates signed Quintana
    18. Royals signed Michael Taylor

    There are more minor signings, but that is 18 teams that have moved.  You can say some signed their own players, but MN has not done that either.  

    Tonight the news about Buxton is great, but it keeps us the same, it does not raise the needle. 

     

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    Mets look like they are printing money, according to MLB traderumors they have offered Scherzer like over $120 million for 3 years.  Question is now, with clubs betting the luxury tax may be higher, will the players union draw a line and insist on a floor and raising the top well above what it is now.

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