Thankfully, cooler heads prevailed between Major League Baseball and the Players’ Union, and both sides have agreed to a new Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) that has a few changes in store for baseball not only in America, but all over the world.
While the CBA still needs to be ratified by both owners and players, the five year agreement came hours before the deadline that would have caused the beginnings of a work stoppage, including curbing the Winter Meetings and possibly postponing or canceling next year’s World Baseball Classic.
There are several small yet important changes in this version of the CBA, listed below:
- No player will receive a Qualifying Offer more than once from a team.
- There is still no International Draft being implemented; however, there will be a $5 (or $6, spending on the source) million dollar cap annually on international signings per team.
- There will be no change to the regular season roster of 25, and September rosters will be 40.
- According to Fox Sports, a team that loses a free agent with a QO will receive a pick, but only if the player receives a contract at least worth $50M. The pick the team receives will depend on its market size, so smaller teams like Tampa Bay or Milwaukee will probably have different thoughts about the QO than, say, a team like the Dodgers or Mets.
- There is a big difference in luxury tax, with new limits being increased every year for the next few years, culminating in a payroll of $210M in 2021. Next season, the luxury tax will begin at a $195M threshold, which means that Dodgers, Yankees, Red Sox, and Tigers will be over the limit to begin the season.
There are still a few details to be hashed out; league minimum salaries are still be discussed as well as personal responsibility clauses as pertaining to domestic violence and substance abuse. There appears to be a change in start times for get away games and the season will start a few days earlier to allow for more off days for teams during the season. There will also be an increase in food allowance for each team as well.
And then there’s this from Ken Rosenthal, my brother in height:
This, along with the forever logjam at O.co or whatever they are calling the stadium these days, does not bode well for the future of Oakland as a baseball town.
All in all, not too much has ultimately changed in the game, other than Manfred undoing Bud’s stupidest legacy of making the All Star Game decide home field advantage for the World Series.