MLB Postpones League Start

Kaylee Donnelly, Senior Writer

The Major League Baseball (MLB) season set to start March 31 has now been postponed, reducing the number of games from 162 to, as of right now, about 156. For the first time in MLB history, the league has resorted to canceling their regular season games in light of the three-month lockout between the owners and the players. This move effectively delays the beginning of the 2022 season.

But what is the lockout all about?

On Dec. 1, 2021, the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), a contract signed between the various MLB owners and the players, expired. Following the expiration the MLB commissioner announced that the league would be entering a lockout, which prevents any signing, trades, or communication between teams and their players.

There have been eight work stoppages in the past, but none of them has ever led to cancellation of regular season games, even the last major lockout from 1994-95. 

Discussions have been ongoing since December, with the owners and the players’ union attempting to reach a deal before the beginning of the season. This February, the players’ union made an offer to the owners, incorporating deals like an incentive system for players to earn more based on their post season awards and performance. MLB came back with one of their proposals to expand the first round of the postseason, which would earn the players about $20 million in postseason shares.

Proposals were shot back and forth, but none stuck. The players’ union rejected the MLB’s call for a mediator. Spring training sessions were postponed, and then spring training games were canceled.

The deadline for an agreement was set to Feb. 28, but on that date the players’ union rejected the MLB’s final offer. As a result, the first two series of the regular season were set to be postponed, which will be the first time since 1995 that the regular season is delayed due to a lockout.

It’s been three months since the old CBA expired, and real negotiations didn’t actually take place until the end of February. Between the player’s push for monetary gains and the owners’ reluctance to increase their share, it doesn’t feel like any significant concessions have been made, leaving fans to wonder when this will end.

The problem is this: without a resolution, there is no season. Without a season, there are no fans, and therefore no money. The league and the players’ union will have to come to a resolution soon, for their careers and their fans’ support will depend on how efficiently the two can come to final negotiations.

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