Breaking: MLB owners vote unanimously to institute a lockout. It is expected to begin tomorrow but unclear what time.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) December 2, 2021
Well, no surprises here, after months (years?) of drums beating about the demise of the 2022 season over CBA negotiations, we’re here.
We’re not gonna roll out some FAQ about the dos and don’ts of players being locked out. Players on the 40-man will no be allowed to rehab with team personnel or work out in team facilities (duh, they’re being locked out, it’s not theoretical!). Players don’t sign, owners don’t offer, Sox Fests get cancelled, dogs and cats living together... If you were around for the Big Hurt White Sox, or you’re an NBA/NHL fan no longer a teenager, you’ve been through the drill.
Hey, lookit the official team website ... see anything missing?
The spending fury leading up to Wednesday midnight certainly made some sort of case for the players. Natch, the money is there to pay players at an escalating rate (watch Bryce Harper’s AAV contract from ... 2019 ... go slip-slidin’ down the list, from No. 1 to, like, in the 40s). Arguably, some of the splurging now is evidence that owners believe future labor terms would (could) be even more generous, thus turning Marcus Semien’s seven years, $175 million or even Max Scherzer’s crazy-pants three year deal with the Mets into bargains.
It certainly was a nice touch that today’s only/final face-to-face session ended seven minutes in, when the owners (always in good faith) suggested reducing pension benefits going forward.
Meanwhile, the MLBPA’s proposal/counterproposal, positing free agency at age 29 or 30, seems a downright concession right out of the box. If this is the players’ best shot at negotiation, perhaps it’s no wonder that the cigar-chompers on the other side thing they can bleed labor dry this time around.
So, you know, whatever, this is the lockout post, go crazy.