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MLB’s newest proposal isn’t really new at all

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MLB sent a new proposal to the Player’s Association, but it sure looks a lot like the old proposal.

San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

MLB has once again made a proposal to the Players Association for a 2020 season. After the two sides were far apart in initial proposals — with the players wanting full prorated salaries for more than 100 games, and the owners wanting the players to take massive, tiered paycuts for an 82-game season — MLB attempted to bridge the gap.

Wait, no, that’s not right. MLB attempted to make it look like they were bridging the gap. Yes, that’s more accurate.

The league’s counter proposal is for a 76-game season with 75% of the prorated salaries, and postseason compensation.

At first glance that might seem like a significant step towards the middle. But it’s not. It’s really just MLB committing to paying the players the same amount of money they’ve been offering the entire time, in all of their plans. They’re just putting a new jacket on it this time so that it looks different.

The players could stand to make a little bit more money with the newest proposal, if a postseason ends up being feasible. But it’s a small enough sum of money (relatively) that it really doesn’t move the needle at all.

Given all that’s transpired in the roughly three months since the coronavirus put the MLB season on hold, nothing should shock us about MLB owners. Still, it’s a little surprising to see them take time to hear feedback about their proposal, and see the Players Association’s counterproposal, and then respond by essentially retweeting themselves. Do they think the players have magically changed their minds in the last week or two? Because that doesn’t seem likely, and the social media reactions back that up.

With every day that no deal is reached, not only is the chance of a 2020 season diminished, but the length of a potential season is shortened. The clock is ticking in a big way, even if the people at the top are still projecting confidence that we’ll have some form of a season, even if it’s one that has long-lasting repercussions.