Major League Baseball owners and players are discussing a new collective bargaining agreement ahead of the Dec. 1 expiration of the current deal.

Continue for updates.

Latin American Players Reportedly Set to Fight Potential International Draft

Monday, Nov. 28

Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports reported a “significant number” of Latin American players are expected to be at Monday’s bargaining session to fight the international draft.

Passan noted that “Latin representation at union meetings has been an issue in the past,” but the divisiveness of the issue “spurred interest.” Passan called the move a “bold play” by the players’ union, saying “the implication is it is putting a line in the sand” on the international draft.

MLB, Union Reportedly Make Progress in Talks

Wednesday, Nov. 23

Jayson Stark of reported negotiations “have progressed this week, to the point where sources finally are expressing optimism that an agreement can be reached before owners impose a lockout.

“Two sources who had spoken with both sides told on Wednesday that they now sense there is ‘a path to a deal,’ following negotiations Tuesday that stretched into the night.” 

On Tuesday, Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reported the owners were considering locking out the players if the two sides failed to agree on a new collective bargaining agreement before the current deal expires on Dec. 1.

Multiple Sticking Points Holding Up New CBA

Rosenthal noted such a move would end baseball’s streak of 21 straight years of labor peace.

A lockout in the offseason would impact roster decisions, such as free-agent signings and trades. Rosenthal did say the winter meetings could still happen from Dec. 4-8, but there wouldn’t be “the usual frenzy of major league activity.”

The threat of the lockout looms over Tony Clark, who heads the players’ union, and MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred in their first time in their current roles. Clark replaced the late Michael Weiner, but Rosenthal noted Manfred served as the lead negotiator for MLB in the last three collective bargaining agreements before taking over as commissioner.

Fans hoping the two sides can avoid a lockout can look toward Manfred’s recent history of serving as lead negotiator in times of labor peace as something of a positive. What’s more, the commissioner told Joel Sherman of the New York Post, “In terms of trying to make a deal, 10 days is plenty of time.”

Sherman also said the two sides negotiated until late Tuesday afternoon and will continue doing so while the players attend their annual meeting from Monday through Wednesday in Dallas.

According to Rosenthal, owners are frustrated with how slow the discussions from the players’ union have been, noting “a number of significant issues remain unresolved.” He also quoted an anonymous player who said, “We are not afraid of a lockout.”

Rosenthal broke down a few of the issues holding up negotiations, including draft-pick compensation and the potential implementation of an international draft.

In the current system, teams lose a draft pick when they sign a free agent who received a qualifying offer. If draft-pick compensation were removed, there would be unrestricted free agency and teams would theoretically be more willing to sign marquee players without fearing the loss of a draft pick.

According to Rosenthal, the owners offered to eliminate the draft-pick compensation if they could implement an international draft, but the players opposed the draft “in part because foreign-born amateurs do not have the same leverage and opportunities as their U.S.-born counterparts, including college.”

Rosenthal also pointed to the competitive-balance tax and the Joint Drug Agreement as other issues the two sides are “at odds over” as negotiations continue.

Despite the potential for a lockout, Chris Cwik of Yahoo Sports’ Big League Stew cautioned that a week before the Dec. 1 deadline is the ideal time for a source on the owners’ side to leak the threat in hopes of players caving on some demands.

Cwik also acknowledged there is plenty of money at stake that could help a deal get done sooner rather than later. 

Read more MLB news on