MLB owners and the MLB Players Association met again Tuesday afternoon beginning at 1 p.m. Eastern time.
This is when the meetings broke up:
MLB and the MLBPA are done bargaining for the day. They’re debriefing on their own now. More TK.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) February 22, 2022
So that’s only a little over two hours worth of meetings, a couple hours shorter than Monday’s session. The two sides then caucused on their own, separately, for another 45 minutes or so before finishing up for the day.
In Tuesday’s bargaining session, it was the Players Association’s turn to make proposals. Here’s what happened:
Included in MLBPA’s offer today:— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) February 22, 2022
• Instead of 80 percent of players w/2-3 yrs of service being eligible for arbitration, now 75 percent.
• Dropped from 8 picks in the amateur draft lottery 7.
• Some increases in minimum salary.
There was no new proposal on CBT.
And there was a bit more, about minimum salaries:
On minimum salary that MLBPA proposed today: First year of the CBA remains $775,000. Each subsequent year, it goes up by $30,000 now, instead of $25,000 previously. So it’s now:— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) February 22, 2022
The second meeting between MLB and the MLBPA today was a smaller group meeting, two to a side: lead negotiator Dan Halem and Rockies owner Dick Monfort for the owners; lead negoatior Bruce Meyer and executive subcommittee member Max Scherzer for the players.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) February 22, 2022
A Cubs player was involved in the first meeting of the day:
MLBPA contingent has gone inside to meet league brass. It’s a lot of the same players from yesterday. Some new ones as well. Cubs Ian Happ just walked in, for example. Day 2 has begun in Jupiter, Fla.— Jesse Rogers (@JesseRogersESPN) February 22, 2022
Some will say this appears to be moving toward a midpoint at which players and owners can agree. If so, it is moving more slowly than Hector Villanueva on a baseball field. The sides have given each other a soft deadline of next Monday, February 28 to avoid a potential delay in the start of the regular season. Given this extremely slow movement — and the lack of any new competitive balance tax proposal, likely the key to a deal — I don’t see much hope in an agreement being made by next Monday. As noted by Jeff Passan:
Perhaps most important: The union did not move on CBT. That has been the lodestar of past negotiations and is shaping up to be the same this time around. The sides will meet for the third consecutive day tomorrow in Jupiter with the clock ticking on MLB’s Feb. 28 deadline.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 22, 2022
The last proposals by both owners and players on the CBT are detailed in this article by Travis Sawchik at The Score:
The players are now trying to catch up, proposing a $245-million tax threshold for 2022. That’s down slightly from a previous proposal but would still be the biggest increase (16.7%) since the threshold system was introduced. Under their proposal, the threshold would gradually rise until it reached $273 million in 2026.
Had the tax threshold risen by 5% annually since the start of the 2012 season, generally mirroring MLB revenue growth, it would have been $276 million last season.
MLB countered Saturday with base thresholds of $214 million for the first two years, then $216 million, $218 million, and $222 million. That’s the same as its previous offer but with increases of $2 million per year in the final three years.
MLB’s increases are very, very small, and include much more onerous penalties for exceeding the limits, and I just don’t see this chasm being bridged anytime soon, especially with no CBT proposals being made at all.
As noted, some of you see progress being made here. I don’t. Reasonable people can differ. Hopefully, that’s what MLB players and owners are doing and they can find a place to agree... but I just don’t see that happening soon.
As always, we await developments.