MLB and MLBPA Reportedly Intend to Meet Multiple Times Next Week, "Perhaps Every Day" (UPDATE)

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MLB and MLBPA Reportedly Intend to Meet Multiple Times Next Week, “Perhaps Every Day” (UPDATE)

Chicago Cubs

Although today’s “bargaining session” was little more than a few minutes for the players to drop off a mildly revised offer on the CBA, it sounds like actual negotiating sessions will be taking place soon.

I don’t know how much it’ll help to be in person and talking at length when the sides are still as far off as they are, but maybe it can’t hurt at this point:

You’ll have to forgive me, for the last two years have made me deeply cynical on all things labor, and this lockout has done nothing to change that. So, when I see this, I think … well that’s some eyewash, isn’t it? The sides know that there is a deadline coming where regular season games are going to be lost, and thus they know they have to at least LOOK like they’re trying, desperately, to avoid that outcome.

And sure, they will try. These will be real talks that maybe move the ball a little bit. But I don’t think anyone could have sold to fans the idea that “We tried as hard as we could, but now the regular season is impacted” based on the sparse and irregular bargaining schedule that had taken place to this point. (To be sure, I don’t think fans are going to buy it anyway – the lockout is almost 80 days old!)

It just feels like a prelude to everyone dropping their hands next Friday, claiming there is just no reasoning with these people, and another lengthy shutdown commences.

All right, I’ll drop the cynical and go sincere for a brief moment: I did mention earlier tonight my increasing suspicion that the players are simply not going to make a substantial move *until* the owners move, specifically, on the luxury tax. I think that may well be the first step that is needed to really get things going, and maybe Rob Manfred and a group of the owners can get enough other owners on board with that idea this weekend – remember, they need freaking 23 out of 30 of them – to come in on Monday with better luxury tax thresholds or better penalties. If they did that, *THEN* I could buy that multiple days of negotiating next week could actually get something done.

Also, yes, I will admit, planning to meet multiple days in a row is better than I was expecting (I was thinking multiple more weeks of the 5 to 7-day back and forths). So this is not BAD news. I’m just so beaten down that I can’t let myself think it’s a good sign. Yet.

UPDATE: Some amplification from Ben Nicholson-Smith:

I will try not to let that middle tweet get my hopes up, but, like I said, I do think that’s how REAL negotiations will start (with MLB saying, fine, ok, we’ll move a lot on the luxury tax). As for that final tweet, that’s the players indicating that they know what their biggest source of leverage is.

Ah, and Passan adding a little more optimism than I’d be willing to wear right now:



Author: Brett Taylor

Brett Taylor is the Editor and Lead Cubs Writer at Bleacher Nation, and you can find him on Twitter at @BleacherNation and @Brett_A_Taylor.