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MLB owners have sent another pay proposal to players

I can tell you right now they’re not going to like this one, either.

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Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

The clock’s ticking on any chance of playing a 2020 MLB season. In order to get any sort of “Spring Training 2.0” started so that games can begin around July 1, that spring training would have to begin around June 10. That’s just two weeks from tomorrow.

MLB owners have sent a new proposal on how they want to pay players this year, per Bob Nightengale of USA Today:

The plan, three persons with knowledge of the proposal told USA TODAY Sports, does not include the same 50-50 revenue-sharing split the owners agreed on two weeks ago that was never submitted to the union. The three people spoke to USA TODAY Sports on the condition of anonymity since they were not authorized to speak publicly due to ongoing negotiations.

The proposal instead includes a sliding scale of compensation, with players earning the most taking the biggest cuts and those earning the least receiving most of their guaranteed salaries.

This... I mean, this doesn’t sound like anything the players would want to do. As Nightengale points out, players already agreed to be paid on a pro-rated basis in an agreement signed with owners March 26. That would get them about 50 percent of their pay in an 82-game season, which would be slightly more than 50 percent of a normal 162-game season. Owners then floated the idea of revenue sharing this year, which MLBPA chief Tony Clark quickly slammed as a “salary cap.” Per Nightengale’s current article, that appears to be no longer on the table.

We don’t yet know how that “sliding scale” would work. I don’t think the players would go for it, but in an unprecedented situation like the one we’re in, perhaps we’re now in an “all bets are off” area where things might happen that wouldn’t in normal times.

I go back and forth on baseball 2020. I miss baseball a great deal and I would certainly love to see live baseball games that are played somewhere other than Asia, even if I can’t attend any. On the other hand, the obstacles in the way of baseball 2020 seem so great that at times I think they should just throw up their hands, cancel the season and make plans for a normal 2021. And yet... if baseball doesn’t get its act together and there’s no season and the other major pro sports do play this year, that would be a tremendous setback for the sport we all love.

As always, we await developments.


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