MLBPA Agent Josh Kusnick: ‘It’s not the Players’ Responsibility to Fix This’

BRONX, NY - OCTOBER 15: Major League Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred looks on prior to Game 3 of the ALCS between the Houston Astros and the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday, October 15, 2019 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Rob Tringali/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
BRONX, NY - OCTOBER 15: Major League Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred looks on prior to Game 3 of the ALCS between the Houston Astros and the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium on Tuesday, October 15, 2019 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Rob Tringali/MLB Photos via Getty Images) /
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MLBPA agent Joshua Kusnick sees something wrong in the business of the game.

With each passing day, it appears less likely that MLB and the MLBPA will strike a deal in order to play in 2020. Back in March, both sides agreed to a deal where players would receive a prorated portion of their salary (about 50%) for playing in the proposed 82-game season.

MLB and the owners then recanted their offer and proposed a new deal where the players would surrender an additional 20%-25% of their salary. As a means for justification, owners said that they would lose over $640,000 a game if games were to be played with no fans, and players were to be paid the prorated portion of their salaries.

The MLBPA declined this offer as well and proceeded to propose a sliding pay scale this week. This scale would offer the lowest-paid players the smallest salary cut while players like Mike Trout and Clayton Kershaw would see their salaries that are upwards of $30 million dwindle to around $7 million. This proposal bred resentment and was met with outrage by players throughout the league including one of its biggest stars Max Scherzer.

“It’s not the player’s responsibility to fix things,” exclaimed MLBPA Agent Joshua Kusnick in an interview earlier today. “The players don’t have to act a certain way to make the owners happy,” he went on.

Kusnick has been an agent since he was merely 20 years old. At 38 years old today, an agent who thought he’d seen everything the industry had to offer over two decades of player representation is appalled at the game’s current state.

“I see something going on in the business and game that I grew up with and I hate it now. I absolutely hate the business of baseball, every part of it is bad,” said the agent who has represented the likes of Michael Brantley, Lorenzo Cain, Seth Lugo, and many more.

Related Story. Why MLB Owners Should Be Ashamed. light

MLBPA agent Joshua Kusnick lays out his biggest frustrations with MLB.

Kusnick’s frustrations stem from MLB’s lack of commitment on their word, fans lacking an understanding of what is truly going on as well as being personally affected by this delay as Minor League client Carlos Asauje was cut from the Chicago Cubs just yesterday.

“Those kinds of fans that keep blaming the players have a fundamental lack of understanding of what’s happening and I don’t know how to reach them,” the outspoken agent pleaded.

Kusnick who was banned from MLB Network just this morning after scheduling an interview with former pitcher C.J. Nitkowski directs some of the frustrations on the lack of public knowledge in regards to MLB’s financials.

“People need to stop blaming players for financial decisions that are out of their hands,” said Kusnick.

The correlation between ticket prices and the cost of attending a ballgame has to player salaries has long been discussed but Kusnick shared his thoughts on the matter.

"“It’s a myth. The owners set the prices on everything and salaries have very little correlation to baseball and what the owners do when setting prices. They base their prices based off their opinion of the free market and how much they can get away with charging."

Kusnick has been pro-labor and pro-union as long as he can remember and revels in the opportunity to represent players and their earnings as well as making sure they are working under fair conditions and that is where his frustrations boil over.

"“The labor base still is the reason this industry is worth billions of dollars. “- Joshua Kusick MLBPA Agent"

Kusnick and many others are upset and rightfully so. MLB looks more cowardly with each proposal and perhaps even delirious. Hiding behind as well as seemingly punishing the game’s biggest stars could prove detrimental to the sport.

“They’re asking someone to take a pay cut from $35 million to $7 million to do the same job and assume the same risk,” he said. “The original contracts were guaranteed and they willingly prorated it. What else do they have to give?

Next. MLB re-opening in July will have its governmental hurdles. dark

As another day passes without baseball players, agents, and fans all wait with bated breath to see if the two sides can work to get a deal done before it’s too late.