59 is how many days left until MLB’s regular season is supposed to begin. Of course there’s still this lockout thing that officially is two months old at midnight tonight.
Normally at this time, staff, pitchers and catchers are making travel arrangements. Foreign players are working on obtaining visas. Equipment trucks are en route to spring training facilities (that last one is probably happening anyway as the minor leaguers will still be in their camp like normal.
Pitchers and catchers are supposed to report around Feb 15. Everything I’ve read indicates 7-10 days are needed to get everything done for spring training to start on time—that means a deal has to be done this week. There were some meetings last week, but I’m not optimistic.
Spring training games are to start Feb 26. No deal by mid-February means Grapefruit/Cactus League games will be affected. There’s a little wiggle room there as teams could invite more minor leaguers to the big league camp and limit incumbent major leaguer innings played. However, there’s no wiggle room for…
59 days. Even a compressed spring training schedule means a deal has to be in place by the beginning of March. If it’s not, the two sides will fail to get the season started on time. More than a week or two beyond that, and a 162 game schedule becomes problematic, especially if the playoffs are expanding as expected.
59 days. Then the PR hit really starts to take effect. Baseball will lose money both from lost games as well as lower attendance.
This week the MLBPA is sending out $5000 checks to its members to assist with expenses. It will happen again the first week of March if there’s no deal by then.