It has been a rough couple of years for Major League Baseball.
In 2020, the coronavirus cut the season in half and eliminated all together the minor league season.
Last year the games returned with fans in the stands but the players were under a cloud facing an end to play once the season ended. On December 2, 2021; the MLB owners did indeed lockout the players over MONEY!.
On March 1, a deadline set by the owners to complete a full season, MLB Commissioner Rob Manford announded that the March 31 opening day has been postponed with a full season in jeopardy.
While games have been eliminated in recent years, this is the first time that games have been cnacelled in 27 years over labour disputes.
While the players have stated that the full 162 game season could be had if they played some double header games, ownership has stated that it will not happen.
Currently Manfred has said that the season is now 156 games long; adding that the players will not be paid for the missed games.
At the moment, further negotiations have not been scheduled.
During the negotiations that led up to the cancellation of opening day, both sides – owners and players association – were not close to an agreement on many facets of the contract. However, Manfred stated, “my deepest hope is we get an agreement quickly.”
After a 16 and a half hour negotiation session on February 28, the League sent what they termed a “best and final offer” to the players association on March 1. The offer was rejected by the MLBPA which prompted Mnfred’s announcement.
Players association leader Tony Clark spoke on the announcement saying, “today is a sad day. The reason we are not playing is simple; a lockout is the ultimate economic weapon.”
Manfred noted that “the concerns of our fans are at the very top of our consideration list.” The union has pledged to push for the cancelled games to be rescheduled once negotiations resume. MLBPA lead negotiator added, “to say they won’t reschedule games if games are canceled or they won’t pay players for those games that are canceled is solely their position. They’re not legally required to take those positions. … We would have a different position.”
Major League Baseball is a $10 billion industry that effects far more than the team owners and players. Fans, concession workers, hospitality workers, and even entire communities are all affected by any work stoppage. Millions of dollars will be lost for every day the games are cancelled.