MLB Back in Session

MLB Back in Session

Gavin Haines (Junior), Reporter

MLB is back in Session

By: Gavin Haines

As we all know MLB season was right around the corner. Spring training was set to begin. However, the MLB Labor Union and the board of the MLB were failing to come to terms about conditions the union had. The Union wanted to raise the minimum salary from 570.5K to 700K. The lockout had lasted 99 days before they could come to an agreement.

“It is finally nice to see the MLB back in session, I’m glad they finally came to an agreement,” said junior Cayman Huntsman.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred, the face of pointed criticism from players throughout the process, said he “could not be more excited about the future of our game” and vowed to work more closely with MLBPA executive director Tony Clark with hopes of bridging a noticeable gap. “One of the things that I’m supposed to do is promote a good relationship with our players,” Manfred said during a news conference from MLB headquarters in New York. “I’ve tried to do that. I think that I have not been successful in that. I think that it begins with small steps. It’s why I picked the phone up after the ratification and called Tony and expressed my desire to work with him. It’s gonna be a priority of mine moving forward to try to make good on the commitment I made to him on the phone.”

“Having a commissioner that cares about his players is very important, and for him to recognize that he hasn’t done a good job about that is a big step,” said senior Andrew Phelps.

With the end of the second-longest work stoppage in the game’s history, the market officially opened, paving the way for trades and free-agent signings. Players are required to report to their respective spring training facilities by Sunday, and the first exhibition games will take place four or five days later. Opening Day will come on April 7, a week later than originally scheduled, but 162 games will nonetheless be played.

“The lockout only effecting the season by one week was important because they can still get all 162 games in no problem,” said freshman Joel Acton.

Under the new CBA, minimum salaries will begin at $700,000 in 2022 — an unprecedented 23% increase from the prior year — and rise to $780,000 for the final year in 2026. The competitive balance threshold, which taxes big-spending teams that surpass preestablished limits, will be set at $230 million in 2022 — a near 10% increase from last year — and reach $244 million by 2026. A $50 million player pool to reward pre-arbitration players who excel will also be incorporated.

“Holding the players values at interest is big for the game, I think it will incentivize players more because they feel like they have support from the MLB,” said freshman Jack Ferrell.