Since I think you know about the big news in the world of baseball, I’m going to take a moment to update this piece I wrote on Monday about the Ricketts family’s interest in purchasing English football (soccer) club Chelsea FC. I wrote that the current owner, Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich, was trying to sell the club before he was placed on a list of people sanctioned for their close ties to Russian dictator Vladimir Putin.
Well, Abramovich wasn’t fast enough as the UK government placed him on their list of sanctioned individuals on Thursday. You can read here about what that means for Chelsea, but it definitely means the club will not be sold anytime soon. In fact, Chelsea is banned from even selling tickets to games right now, although fans who already have tickets will be allowed to attend.
Eventually, the UK government and Abramovich are going to work out an agreement allowing the sale of the team, but that may take months or even years.
- Both commissioner Rob Manfred and Players Association chief Tony Clark hailed the new collective bargaining agreement.
- Hannah Keyser outlines how the final agreement came about and what’s in the deal.
- Evan Drellich also explains what’s in the deal and how it was agreed to. (The Athletic sub. req.)
- Jay Jaffe also tells you everything that’s in the CBA.
- Next we have a series of “Where do we go from here?” and “What you need to know” articles. Bob Nightengale writes about the agreement and what happens next.
- ESPN dot com answers some questions that you may have.
- MLB dot com is back, and Anthony Castrovince has an FAQ on the 2022 season, straight from the source.
- Steve Gardner also answers questions about the 2022 season.
- R.J. Anderson has five takeaways from the new CBA.
- Players from around the league react to the ending of the lockout.
- Will Leitch writes a tribute to baseball and why the game matters.
- Matt Snyder explains how the new 12-team playoff works and how it would have worked in previous seasons.
- Lindsey Adler has an interview with Yankees pitcher Gerrit Cole (The Athletic sub. req.), who was on the MLBPA’s executive subcommittee.
- The owners and union basically punted the problem of an international draft down the road in the CBA, but this article by Alden Gonzalez and Marly Rivera does a very good job of explaining what’s at stake with an international draft and why the thing is such a big deal. Everyone agrees that the current system is rife with corruption, but no one knows if a draft would make things better or worse.
- Despite the agreement, Vermont senator Bernie Sanders says he plans to introduce legislation to end MLB’s antitrust exemption.
- There are a whole lot of “What does [team x] do now that the lockout is over?” stories. Brittany Ghiroli has one big question for all 30 teams. (The Athletic sub. req.)
- Jack Harris and Mike DiGiovanna look at what the Angels and Dodgers will face now the lockout has ended.
- Sam Blum thinks the Angels will attempt to fix their pitching staff. (The Athletic sub. req.)
- Danny Abriano reports that the Yankees plan to be “aggressive” in their pursuit of more offense.
- Justin Toscano looks at the questions facing defending champion Atlanta Braves going into 2022.
- Jesse Dougherty examines what comes next for the Nationals.
- Zack Maisel checks out where the Guardians next steps now that the lockout has ended. (The Athletic sub. req.)
- Mark Feinsand has the top free agents still available this winter.
- Tim Kelly has the top 25 free agents still on the market.
- R.J. Anderson predicts where the top ten free agents will sign.
- For those who have subscriptions to The Athletic. Andy McCullough has a series of articles on where the top free agents might sign. For example here’s Freddie Freeman and here’s Carlos Correa. There are more.
- One thing the new CBA created is a rules committee, and one of the rules that they are going to consider is banning defensive shifts. Justin Choi explains what a ban on defensive shifts will and will not accomplish.
- South Side Sox has a podcast with an exclusive interview with White Sox catcher Yasmani Grandal.
- Some really sad news:
Former MLB pitcher Odalis Pérez was found dead at his home. According to reports, Pérez suffered a blow to the head after falling from a ladder.— Héctor Gómez (@hgomez27) March 11, 2022
Pérez played for Braves, Dodgers, Ronald and Nationals. In 2002 was selected to the All Star Game.@z101digital @ZDeportes pic.twitter.com/pnOibfK3pF
Our sympathies go out to his family and friends.
- Former Cardinals pitcher Kwang-hyun Kim has returned to Korean Baseball Organization’s SSG Landers, his former team in Korea. He signed a KBO-record four-year deal worth up to $12.3 million.
- Mark Bowman checks in with J.J. Niekro, a knuckleball pitcher in the Braves organization and the son of Joe Niekro.
- And finally, perhaps the only real moment of humor in this lockout came early on Thursday. As the negotiations grew close to an end, one of the top baseball reporters, ESPN’s Jeff Passan, had his Twitter account hacked by NFT scammers. Imagine hacking Jeff Passan’s Twitter account and not posting that Mets pitchers Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer are both having Tommy John surgery under Dr. James Andrews’ new “buy one, get one free” promotion.
End the lockout, comm . . . Oh yeah. I guess I can go back to reminding Buster Olney that tomorrow is going to be a good day too.