As we inch closer to Major League Baseball’s target return of early July, there is still plenty that needs to fall into place before that date becomes a reality.
According to a series of tweets from The New York Post’s Joel Sherman, there remains a large gap between the MLB and the MLBPA on an agreement to return to play.
Sherman also mentions that the two sides are not near an agreement regarding health and safety protocols. This, of course, is an imperative part of any agreement in getting players to agree to come back and play in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The financial side of the proposal includes a sliding scale pay cut, with top earners being hit much more severely than players who have yet to reach arbitration and are currently earning a league minimum salary, per USA Today‘s Bob Nightengale.
This is a different direction than MLB’s original plan, which included a 50/50 revenue split between the league and the players. This proposal came despite an agreement in spring training between the players and the owners that players would be payed prorated salaries based on how many games are played, because of the loss in revenue after it was realized that fans will probably not be able to return this season.
Even if everything else proceeds positively with government and health officials regarding a return to play, none of it will matter if the league and the MLBPA are unable to come to agreements on financial details and health/safety protocols. Look for this to continue to unfold during this week as both sides look to reach some form of a middle ground on these issues.
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