If you’ve had your ears perked for news about the Collective Bargaining Agreement negotiations between Major League Baseball and its Players Association, you’ve heard mostly a mix of crickets and the vast, eerie calm of silence.
The two sides not only have not been close to agreement on anything, they mostly haven’t even seen one another. That changed a bit today, though, as the two sides met for nearly two hours in a set of negotiations that while not solving anything concretely, at least began to narrow the focus a bit. The Athletic’s Evan Drellich had more details on today’s talks, including that the union began to scale back some of their more notable asks that had quite obviously been non-starters for MLB.
Source: MLBPA withdraws proposal to allow players to get to free agency before 6 years. Made modified revenue sharing proposal as well https://t.co/NGqnSCf55K— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) January 24, 2022
Along with scrapping their request that the period of service time before free agency be altered, the MLBPA also reduced their proposal to cut revenue sharing significantly, two things that MLB had effectively blockaded from the beginning of the talks. That’s not so much of a ‘loss’ for the union here, though, since they were pretty far-fetched asks to begin with.
Perhaps more important than those two details is the reality that both sides are planning to meet again tomorrow, too. Back to back days of legitimate detailing is precisely what needs to happen at this juncture should the idea of a full spring training and season not begin to be called into question, so it’s refreshing to see them get a little less hard-line and actually begin to bargain on the topics that the sides are willing to bring to the table.
While I have little hopes for an agreement being struck in any immediacy, I do anticipate there being more specifics about the willingness of each side in the coming days, and we’ll relay that news when we get it.