Major League Baseball lockout ends

Major League Baseball lockout ends

Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association have agreed to a new collective bargaining agreement that would spell the end of the ongoing lockout.

Both sides officially ratified the deal, with the owners unanimously voting to approve the agreement and the players voting 26-12 in favor of the new CBA bringing an end to months of negotiations that were rarely anything other than tense.

Heading into the offseason, fans expected such an outcome and the Major League Baseball lockout came as a little surprise to anyone.

The bigger question was whether the situation would drag into the spring or potentially even jeopardize the whole of the 2022 regular season.

The first week of spring training was lost in mid-February as negotiation continued before MLB set Feb. 28th as the deadline for a new CBA in order to start the regular season on the scheduled time. As that deadline neared, multiple reports surfaced about the entire first month of the season being potentially lost.

After a difficult negotiation process, commissioner Rob Manfred expressed his happiness at baseball’s return. “I am genuinely thrilled to say Major League Baseball is back, and we’re going to play 162 games,”.

The most salient features of the new CBA include:

  • Expanding to a 12-team playoff field
  • Universal designated hitter
  • Six-team draft lottery
  • New $50-million bonus pool
  • Increases to competitive balance tax thresholds (starting at $230M, rising to $244M)
  • Changes to minimum salary (starting at $700K, rising to $780K)
  • Addressing service-time manipulation
  • The top two Rookie of the Year finalists get a full year of service time
  • 20-round amateur draft
  • Players can be optioned to the minor leagues a maximum of five times per year

As part of the new agreement, the union will drop the grievance it filed in 2020 over MLB’s handling of the pandemic-shortened season. However, the MLBPA didn’t drop the revenue-sharing grievance it filed against four clubs in 2018.

Players can now report to spring training as early as today, while Opening Day for a 162-game season is expected to be April 7th.



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