The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted everyone’s lives for over two months but normalcy appears to be on its way. The NHL today announced its plans for holding their playoffs, and the NBA and NFL are expected to take their first steps in convening soon.
Unfortunately, baseball fans weren’t greeted with the same optimism that their sports fan counterparts welcomed.
Just this morning, baseball fans across social media were exploring the fascinating idea that MLB could make an announcement on the fate of the 2020 season within the next 24 hours.
It took less than 12 hours for the next story to come out, and it didn’t contain a positive tone. As Evan Drellich of The Athletic reported, the MLBPA is “very disappointed” with today’s economic proposal from the league.
Drellich adds that the league made an enticing offer in sharing more playoff revenue but the Players’ Association was under the impression that that shared revenue would not make up for the overall dollars lost.
The MLBPA is very disappointed with MLB’s economic proposal today, source tells me and @Ken_Rosenthal, calling additional cuts proposed “massive." League offered to share more playoff revenue, but on balance, those dollars are small compared to what players give up, PA believes.— Evan Drellich (@EvanDrellich) May 26, 2020
There are surely a lot of back-and-forth conversations to be held in the near future; after all, the league and players both share hopes of beginning the season as soon as possible. However, the fact that the MLBPA was disappointed with the proposal proves that there is a long way to go as negotiations rage on and this isn’t as simple as making one final tweak for baseball to return. (For what it’s worth, if a deal comes to fruition within the next couple of weeks, Opening Day would likely occur around July 4.)
Jeff Passan of ESPN added that the league’s proposed cuts would result in salary reductions for every player, but those hit with the most drastic cuts would be the league’s highest-paid players. Such a proposal would include minor cuts and prorated shares for the lesser-paid players.
Passan adds that the exact terms of the cuts are unclear, but the hindrances to the top players’ contracts would be north of 60 percent, leaving some players with roughly one-third of what they would earn under normal circumstances.
MLB proposed cuts to the highest-paid players in baseball in its first economic proposal to the players Tuesday. Players in turn bristled at the proposal. There is a significant gap between what the league offered and what the players want. News at ESPN: https://t.co/1ZUgA01MNU— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) May 26, 2020
As the pandemic continues, it is important to remain optimistic—and maybe binge watch baseball highlights on YouTube along the way. (JomBoy and Foolish Baseball are a few go-to channels to check out.) While it may be tough to find the positives in a world that lacks normalcy and sports, the mere fact that the league is exploring a potential return is positive in itself.
Perhaps the next few days of negotiations will speed up between the union and the league—two parties that both want baseball back as soon as possible.