Sports: MLB Lockout Keeps Baseball Fans and Players Waiting
by Aeden Alexander, Sports Editor
Major League Baseball announces that the 2022 regular season will have games canceled much to the anguish of players and fans, as players and owners can’t agree to a deal that would end their lockout.
With the original start of Spring Training being on February 26th, the MLB and Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) are way past their deadline of getting a new labor deal finalized. This will not only delay and cancel Spring Training games, but it will now also cause the cancellation of the beginning of the regular season.
After the 2021 season, the current Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) expired, leaving another deal to be made. However, the MLBPA did not agree with the terms of the last deal and believed that it was too unfair for the players in many different aspects.
One of the players’ main concerns is about how poorly Minor League players are treated, as they get less pay than minimum wage in some states, as well as subpar housing in some situations. There were many other aspects of the deal that caused the lockout, including greedy owners and representatives of Major League Baseball.
Both sides have met almost every day for the past three weeks trying to make a deal. Reports have changed day to day, some being that a deal is close to being completed, with some days ending in frustration and talks going back to square one.
The first deadline that the MLB set for an agreement to avoid canceling games was 5 P.M. on March 1st, which was not met due to Major League Baseball wanting a 14-team playoff bracket, opposed to the players’ preferred number of twelve teams.
Once the news broke about the first weekend series being canceled, many players and associates of the game of baseball came out on social media expressing their disgust with the league.
One of the main reasons the MLB owners are able to go so long without a season is that statistically, the first month of the season is always their worst economically. Losing the first few weeks doesn’t mean much to them.
In addition to the players, fans are also in outrage because America’s pastime is not happening and getting shortened. Baseball is coming off of one of its most exciting years in the past decade, which included the two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani as well as the underdog Atlanta Braves winning the World Series.
The lockout has made many things tough within the league as well, due to the fact that players are not allowed to be around each other at times, which makes it difficult during holidays.
The board members of the MLBPA include some of the faces of baseball, as well as other respectable players. There are hundreds of players involved, but there are a selected number that really have a say in negotiations.
Tony Clark is one of the few retired players within the association and the Executive Director. Other associates consist of Max Scherzer, Andrew Miller, Elvis Andrus and Daniel Murphy.
This is only the ninth time in history where there has been a lockout in baseball, and the last time there was a lockout was right before the steroid era, in the 1990s.
For America this is a major blow, as usually the end of the Super Bowl and NFL season signals the beginning of baseball. But now, with there being conflicts and delay, the future of the game due is at risk to the fact that kids are not watching any baseball.
MLB set another deadline for the end of the day on March 9th. If there is no agreement made, they will be canceling more games and most likely not play a full season.