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Once again, MLB owners and players make little progress in negotiations

This week has been like watching the grass at Wrigley Field grow.

Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

We are in Day 3 of the negotiations between MLB owners and the MLB Players Association in which the two sides said they’d meet every day. They have done so, and have met for several hours each time, either together or caucusing amongst themselves. Overall, caucuses and meetings Wednesday lasted a bit more than five hours. I don’t know whether that’s a good thing or not; at this time I don’t know how much of that time was spent actually negotiating, and how much of it was just owners and players meeting separately.

Once again, I have to report to you that almost no progress has been made. Here’s one report of a slightly tweaked offer owners made to players:

Good, I suppose, that they were still talking at the time of that tweet, four hours after they had begun. And here’s a reply to that tweet that shows how insignificant those proposed minimum salary raises actually are:

Thirty percent more money from national TV contracts. I’ll save you the math: Adding $10,000 to $630,000 (to get to that $640,000 figure) is about 1.5 percent.

Here’s how far apart the two sides are:

And don’t forget this about the CBT (competitive balance tax, or “luxury tax”):

I don’t see the CBT being pulled off the table, either. It’s probably the biggest sticking point in these negotiations.

Now, a few other random notes. I’ve got a bit of a bone to pick with the Associated Press over this headline:

“Max Scherzer arrives in Porsche.” Translation: “Look at this rich, greedy player.” I’m guessing the owners attending this meeting likely flew in on private jets, or at the very least in First Class on a commercial airline. What difference does this make, AP? Why are you positioning things that way? That’s not good journalism. Here, Grant Brisbee put it best:

Also:

Better headline, AP:

Ben Nicholson-Smith adds:

Also, the linked article mentions a number of players who were at the meeting and then contains this irrelevant paragraph:

Britton, Cole, Paxton, Scherzer and Semien are represented by Scott Boras, baseball’s most powerful agent.

What difference does that make to these negotiations? (NARRATOR: “None.”) Do better, AP.

Then, it got to silly season:

But Chelsea Janes is spot-on here:

As always, we await developments, but this is developing so slowly that I suspect we’re going to be waiting past the stated February 28 deadline to start the season on time. If these talks go past that date with no deal, I think all bets are off.