Sides make progress in MLB talks, will meet again Tuesday

Field Level Media

January 24, 2022 at 11:26 pm.

Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association had their longest meeting yet Monday, as the two sides continue to negotiate a Collective Bargaining Agreement in the wake of the league lockout that began Dec. 2.

The meeting lasted about two hours, according to multiple reports, a stark contrast to the seven minutes a previous meeting ran, and both sides plan to continue negotiations again Tuesday, during which the league is expected to offer a counter proposal.

On Monday, the players rejected an owners proposal put forward on Jan. 13, one that did raise the minimum salary (one of the largest sticking points in the negotiations) and provided incentive to teams not to manipulate service time — which determines when a player can enter free agency — of top prospects.

Of note, the players have reportedly dropped a request to tie free agency to age rather than service time and tweaked their revenue sharing requests.

But that side is still maintaining its minimum salary demands, its desire for an eight-team draft lottery and a raise in the competitive balance tax threshold.

The bottom line for the players side has been to increase the wages and bargaining power for younger players, cheaper options who organizations have leaned on more and more in recent years even as franchise values have grown.

This is the first baseball work stoppage since the famous 1994 strike that led to the cancellations of the 1994 World Series and didn’t resolve until April 2, 1995 (after beginning Aug. 12, 1994).

Since then, the players and owners had reached five collective bargaining agreements without any shutdowns.

Spring training is scheduled to start Feb. 16, with Opening Day planned for March 31.