No, the lockout is not over, far from it. In fact, there are still big issues to settle on the sidelines of what MLB calls a stalemate in the negotiations.
Yesterday, the players’ offer did not please the bosses (as I slipped in a word here) because there were very few compromises, which means that we are entitled to expect a possible announcement to cancel more games, even if it should negotiate a lot this week.
How to resolve the impasse? According to information from Ken Rosenthal, the MLB would be ready to (potentially) raise the threshold for the luxury tax. MLB doesn’t want to go up to $238 million as players want for 2022, but that would be more than the proposed $220 million.
But to receive, you know like me that you have to give. What should the MLBPA give against a higher threshold?
In return for an increase in the first tier of the luxury tax, MLB would like huge consequences for clubs exceeding the highest tier of the luxury tax threshold and would like players to agree to charge less than 80 M $ for the pool of money reserved for the best players who do not have access to arbitration yet.
Quickly like that, I see several problems.
If four clubs (Angels, Reds, Tigers and DBacks) voted against a luxury tax of $220 million, we can believe that several clubs will be added to the lot if it is higher.
But even on the other side of the spectrum, will the Mets and Dodgers, clubs that are going to spend like crazy, going to vote against it too, a question of not having huge penalties if the highest threshold of the tax luxury is surpassed? I do not understand the principle of voting to impose penalties, but good.
Remember that 23 owners (or more) must agree to ratify an offer.
Among players, the goal has always been to better supervise young players, even to the detriment of the better off.
And the MLB proposal does not follow this path. Why? Because raising the luxury tax threshold helps the wealthiest (the free agents will benefit) and lowering the money pool hurts players with less than three years of major league baseball experience.
On paper, the owners’ offer may seem fair, but I have a hard time seeing how it can be realistic for players. Is it simply choosing your poison, in the end?