Pessimism about the return of Major League Baseball this season is at an all-time high. The players association has made their public outrage towards the league’s owners known after the league forwarded a proposal that called for significant cuts to player’s salaries for the 2020 season.
Nationals star pitcher Max Scherzer, one of eight high-ranking active players on the Players Association executive board, published a strongly worded statement on Twitter Wednesday night, detailing the players’ position.
“After discussing the latest developments with the rest of the players there’s no reason to engage with MLB in any further compensation reductions,” Scherzer wrote. “We have previously negotiated a pay cut in the version of prorated salaries, and there’s no justification to accept a 2nd pay cut based upon the current information the union has received. I’m glad to hear other players voicing the same viewpoint and believe MLB’s economic strategy would completely change if all documentation were to become public information.”
Interestingly, despite the state of things, the folks in Vegas still believe there is an overwhelming likelihood that MLB figures out a way to get restarted. Per BetOnline, you’d have to bet $500 dollars that there will be a baseball season in order to win $100 should it take place. Conversely, a $100 bet would net $300 on the season not taking place.
The oddsmakers agree: There will be a baseball season, just let the negotiations play out.
Per BetOnLine (https://t.co/RYCBM1snkh):
Will there be an MLB regular season?
Yes -500 (1/5)
No +300 (3/1) https://t.co/RwKCLDI2xR
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) May 28, 2020
Despite the public statements from the players, there would be so much to lose should MLB not be able to figure out how to get started during a national pandemic, especially considering all the other major sports seem well on their way for a restart.
The sides will come up with a compromise.
Maybe MLB will agree to let the players keep the $170 million in advance fees that ended May 24.
Maybe the union will figure out a way to share the risk if a second wave of COVID-19 hits this fall, cancelling the World Series and costing MLB about $1 billion in TV revenue.
Maybe they can figure out a deferred-payment plan.
Maybe they’ll agree to try to play 100 games, taking their chances they can safely play into mid-November.
But, rest assured, assuming municipalities are open for business, and the safety and health protocols are satisfactory for everyone, these two sides will find a way.
It just takes time. There’s no deadline in these negotiations.
So, sit back, relax and try not to be caught up in the war of words.
We are going to have a baseball season.
Major League Baseball has no choice.