Why MLB Owners Should Be Ashamed

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 30: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred visits "Mornings With Maria" hosted by Maria Bartiromo at Fox Business Network Studios on September 30, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Steven Ferdman/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 30: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred visits "Mornings With Maria" hosted by Maria Bartiromo at Fox Business Network Studios on September 30, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Steven Ferdman/Getty Images) /

MLB owners should be ashamed of themselves for their salary cut proposal to the players.

The biggest focal point of the 2020 baseball season is exactly that-the 2020 baseball season. Will there be one? If so, how many games? Can fans attend? What are the safety protocols being implemented for players and baseball operations personnel alike? When will a deal get done between MLB and the MLBPA? All burning questions in regards to the boys of summer.

From the outside perspective it certainly appears like MLB and the Player’s Association are at a standstill and that assumption is accurate. In the midst of a pandemic, the likelihood of conducting an MLB season appears slimmer and slimmer with each passing day.

“I’m hoping by you know June, latest July just to get the fans involved at least online or on TV just to get some energy going with baseball because it’s been a while,” said free agent James Loney on whether or not he thinks we will see baseball in 2020.

Related Story. This week crucial to MLB return. light

Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association had a meeting yesterday in which MLB proposed that the league’s highest paid players take a salary cut while the lowest paid players get paid in full. ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported the proposed salary cuts.

This proposal is the latest in a string of proposals from MLB that puts pressure on the players and make them look like public enemy number one when they decline deals of this nature.

It is a shame that MLB is now going to make its most marketable and profitable assets appear less like such when they offer them a deal few unions would take and they are faced to address it publicly. While MLB continues to use it’s players as a shield to escape public backlash, baseball in 2020 is gasping for air to stay alive.

With the owner’s previously proposing a revenue-sharing system in which current players would only receive 20%-25% of their initial 2020 pay, many players around the league, including Tampa Bay All-Star Blake Snell, have made their opinions on this matter public.

Of course, this proposal, and the outrage by players is justified. Prior to this proposal where players would receive almost a quarter of their compensation, MLB offered an original proposal that was agreed upon by both parties where players would receive a prorated portion of their salary (50%) if they were to play about half of their season.

With a deal in place it seemed as though everyone could exhale as the thought of Opening Day in a couple of weeks was the only peace most of us could find amongst the chaos in the world. Of course, we will not expect MLB to return to normal this year even if they do play. The health risks and changes to their schedule is something a lot of players don’t take lightly.

“It’s a messy situation and a lot of the players are still concerned with their health” said Loney who hit .284/.336/.410 over 11 Major League seasons.

The current standstill could also be a precursor between a battle of dominance between the two entities. With the clock on the current Collective Bargaining Agreement ticking, neither side wants to be inferior by settling for the lesser end of the deal. The reality is owners are losing revenue and wanting to pay players less. The players want their fair share of the deal as they are assuming all of the health risks in order to help them gain revenue.

And though it would be a shame if it happened following the loss of a season due to a pandemic and the inability to get a deal done, one wonders if this battle of employer and employee should be so strong it carries over into the discussions of the new CBA.

“I think if the players get enough of what they need this year, next year should be pretty solid and both sides should have a good relationship,” Loney exclaimed in regards to the effect of the expiring CBA on the current season.

"“A lot of it will come down to money too, how much the owners make this year and how much the players think they deserve.”- James Loney former Los Angeles Dodger"

We look for sports to create an outlet for an escape from reality even if only for a few mere moments. They offer a sense of consistency and order-something our world is disparately yearning for- as well as an opportunity for us to emanate passion and healing. The ability to heal a team, a nation, a continent.That is baseball’s role to society.

The great George W. Bush was able to begin the healing process of a city and country following the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001 with one ceremonial first pitch and a pump of the fist. In 2013, we watched as David Ortiz took the microphone during a pregame ceremony and started a rally cry that will forever live in the hearts and minds of baseball fans everywhere as well as Bostonians- “This is our f****** city.” 

Next. Six players that could hit .400 in 2020. dark

MLB and MLBPA have the opportunity to internationally grow the popularity of what is constantly referred to as America’s Pastime and a dying sport in the same sentence. If done right, it could mark the start of baseball’s next revolution while being the table setter for international expansion, partnerships, and popularity. If done wrong or not at all however, there is no telling what the cost could be. Opportunities for expansion, increasing international revenue, the state of free agency, and rule changes that aren’t acted upon appropriately could be detrimental to the baseball’s health.