I’ve got nothing on LSU baseball this morning. I’m just sick of posting photos of chains around baseball equipment and wanted to show someone who played baseball over the weekend.
- Bob Nightengale writes that the two sides in the collective bargaining talks are still far apart and that MLB is expected to cancel another week of games early this week.
- Buster Olney tells all sides of the collective bargaining agreement to get their priorities in order and start looking at the bigger picture. While there is a bit of “a pox on both your houses” going on here, Olney certainly aims more firepower on ownership than the players. And if the owners are starting to lose Buster Olney . . .
- Jon Heyman writes:
Players union agreed to allow MLB to ban shifts, implement a pitch clock and make bases larger in 2023, subject to those agreements fitting into a total deal. Union also rejected Robo umps for ‘22/‘23. MLB goal: to be able to streamline the process and add excitement ti the game.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) March 6, 2022
- MLB reportedly wants to implement a pitch clock of of 14 seconds with no one on and 19 seconds with a man on base. This is the one place where I’m on the owners side, although I’d probably make it 15 and 20 seconds for simplicity’s sake.
- Eno Sarris explains why the competitive balance tax is basically a salary cap in all but name. (The Athletic sub. req.)
- Mike Axisa outlines why that the owners proposal to increase the minimum salary is not a good deal for the players.
- Amidst the uncertainty of the lockout, several MLB executives have asked for this season’s Rule 5 draft to be cancelled. Kiley McDaniel and Jeff Passan explain the thinking behind cancelling the draft and how this could benefit both sides. Except for the players who might be taken in the Rule 5 draft. It would stink for them. The Players Association would have to agree to the cancellation.
- The MLBPA announced a $1 million fund for stadium workers and others employees impacted by the lockout. Not wanting to look like the bad guys here, the owners followed suit and matched the union’s $1 million offer for impacted employees.
- Bob Nightengale uses Brewers pitcher Corbin Burnes as the perfect example of a player whom the current CBA really hurts and whom the new agreement needs to treat more fairly.
- Dodgers pitcher Joe Kelly wrote a piece for the Los Angeles Times where he pleads with fans not to give up on baseball. If you’re reading this, that means you. Kelly writes that he understands why the fans are angry, but begs you to remember why you love this greatest of sports.
- Kevin Acee takes the example of the Padres (he’s a San Diego Union-Tribune writer) to say that MLB risks alienating a ton of fans by the lockout.
- This is a bit of a “baseball is dying” article by Jay Busbee, but he does make the point that MLB is running a huge risk in that maybe the fans won’t “miss” baseball like they think they will.
- Anthony Castrovince has an outline of the owners’ proposal for an international draft. Castovince works for Manfred and naturally tries to point out how wonderful this all would be, but this proposal sounds horrifying to my eyes. On the other hand, I will admit the current system of signing international amateurs is pretty awful and needs reform. But the current system is not this awful. Remember — the only real purpose of a draft is to limit the amount of money that amateur players can earn. Everything else is just eyewash.
- You may have heard this already, but Evan Drellich reports that four owners voted against the owners “last, best offer” last week because they thought it was too generous. (The Athletic sub. req., but you can read a summary here.) The four owners were the Reds’ Bob Castellini, the Diamondbacks’ Ken Kendrick, the Tigers’ Chris Ilitch and the Angels’ Arte Moreno.
- Hall of Fame baseball writer Hal McCoy revealed the Castellini tried to fire him from his job at Fox Sports Ohio for being critical of the club.
- Matt Snyder outlines what the MLB season might look like depending on how long the lockout lasts.
- On some non-lockout news, Guardians pitcher Shane Bieber expects to be fully healthy by Opening Day, whenever that is. Bieber only pitched six innings after the All-Star Game last year because of shoulder problems.
- Bill Shea looks at how Topps is putting Cleveland baseball players in “Guardians” uniforms for their 2022 cards. (The Athletic sub. req.) Including Shane Bieber.
- Matt Monagan continues MLB dot com’s crusade to bring you the best in retired players by looking back at the remarkable career of the Pirates’ Willie Stargell.
- This Kent State softball player unlocked her inner Javy Báez and pulled off an amazing move to avoid a tag and score a run against Drake.
- Anne Rogers takes a look at the Royals’ state-of-the-art housing development for minor leaguers at their Spring Training location in Surprise, AZ. Again, I’ll give the Royals ownership some props for this and every team should do it.
- And finally, this will never happen and I’ve proposed it before, but Chad Jennings proposes a limited form of promotion and relegation for MLB. (The Athletic sub. req.) His version is a bit more realistic than mine was, but the owners still will never agree to it.
End the lockout.