Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Saturday, January 27, 2018

MLB players, teams face FA standoff despite Cain deal

Wishful thinking for the players.

All of it is part of a bigger battle to come, one that is going to define the short remainder of this offseason, hang over the 2018 season and come to a head next November. The animus is strong, the players fixing for a fight, ownership inviting one. It’s real enough that one executive this week wondered if the sides might consider opening up the collective-bargaining agreement in the near term and giving the union financial concessions in exchange for labor peace beyond the pact’s current Dec. 1, 2021 expiration date.

It’s an idea certainly, and even if it’s unlikely, it shows the danger of where the sides are today. Just because Lorenzo Cain cashed in doesn’t change baseball’s fundamental problems. The staring contest endures, for the foreseeable future and beyond, and nobody’s eyes seem to be getting tired.

Jim Furtado Posted: January 27, 2018 at 05:28 AM | 12 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: cba, mlbpa

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. The Ghost of Logan Schafer Posted: January 27, 2018 at 05:35 PM (#5614458)
Spring training is too long anyways. These guys will start drifting into camps towards the end of February. Even if they have to sign
a one-year deal, that's better than making a stand and sitting out a season you can never get back.
   2. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 29, 2018 at 11:36 AM (#5614908)
All of it is part of a bigger battle to come, one that is going to define the short remainder of this offseason, hang over the 2018 season and come to a head next November. The animus is strong, the players fixing for a fight, ownership inviting one. It’s real enough that one executive this week wondered if the sides might consider opening up the collective-bargaining agreement in the near term and giving the union financial concessions in exchange for labor peace beyond the pact’s current Dec. 1, 2021 expiration date.


This was utterly predictable when the last CBA was signed in November 2016. Aside from doing away with penalizing teams for signing free agents in the way of first round draft picks, most of the changes were around the margins; the status quo remained largely unchanged. It was a very poor deal for the players, and it was so because the union clung to a failing model. The union continued to sell out on the notion that if the compensation to amateurs was capped, the rest of the money in the teams' coffers would flow to free agents. That may have been the case when unsophisticated "baseball people" were running front offices. But as we've seen the rest of the money in the teams' coffers is by and large being kept in the teams' coffers, given that teams now understand that free agents generally are a bad buy relative to other options.

The union is failing its members. Eventually the fight that should already have been had will give way to the inevitable war that will be had.
   3. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 29, 2018 at 11:47 AM (#5614920)
The union is failing its members. Eventually the fight that should already have been had will give way to the inevitable war that will be had.

How so? Salaries keep going up. By some estimates, players are getting about the same 50% share of revenue that they have been for 10+ years.

Things seem way too good for the players to justify a "war".
   4. Rennie's Tenet Posted: January 29, 2018 at 12:59 PM (#5614998)
Seems like the article was mostly prepared before Milwaukee did their thing last week. The repeated little insertions about Cain undermine the theme of sides prepared for pitched battle.
   5. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: January 29, 2018 at 01:11 PM (#5615016)

Things seem way too good for the players to justify a "war".


To the extent there is a "problem" this is it. The players deserve more than they are getting but things are too good to motivate a war. If the owners want to trigger a war they will propose a hard cap but as long as that is off the table and FAs are getting deals I don't see it. I'm sure there will be grumbling but when the winter ends and JD Martinez has a 5/135 deal with a 2 year opt out and Eric Hosmer has a 7 year deal somewhere and all these fungible middle relievers have signed deals for varying numbers of millions of dollars it will be hard for the union to say "hey we have a problem."

If baseball is going to have a labor problem it is going to be the minors. We've already seen some of the rumblings of this with the minimum wage stuff and it's not hard to envision the minor league players saying "hold the #### on, I don't want to get wealthy but give me a living wage."
   6. dlf Posted: January 29, 2018 at 03:14 PM (#5615144)
How so? Salaries keep going up. By some estimates, players are getting about the same 50% share of revenue that they have been for 10+ years.


I don't vouch for the calculations, but this Fangraphs article suggests that the player's share of revenue peaked at 56% in 2002, by 2015, it was under 40%.
   7. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 29, 2018 at 04:48 PM (#5615281)
I don't vouch for the calculations, but this Fangraphs article suggests that the player's share of revenue peaked at 56% in 2002, by 2015, it was under 40%.

Other work suggests that's incorrect.

http://www.chroniclet.com/national-news/2016/03/21/AP-study-players-share-of-Major-League-Baseball-revenues-remain-stable-over-past-decade.html

The problem with the 43%/Boras numbers is that it uses gross revenue from MLBAM. Lots of MLBAM revenue has nothing to do with the MLB. They do tons of work for other sports.
   8. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: January 29, 2018 at 08:33 PM (#5615419)
In that case, hopefully the MLBAM revenue that has nothing to do with the MLB doesn't go to the owners either. But where does it go?
   9. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 29, 2018 at 08:37 PM (#5615421)
In that case, hopefully the MLBAM revenue that has nothing to do with the MLB doesn't go to the owners either. But where does it go?

It goes to the owners. They footed the money to found MLBAM. That's where the $50M one-time disbursement is coming from. The sale of the corporation.
   10. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: January 29, 2018 at 09:07 PM (#5615428)
That sounds a bit odd to me, to be honest. We know that unlike most corporate capitalists, the owners are in a privileged position where the law lets them form a cartel, bargain collectively, pool and redistribute revenue to ensure all franchises are on sound financial footing in perpetuity, and this is justified because they are a public resource that provides baseball-related entertainment to us all.

And now, another thing the owners join together to do with their money is venture capitalism in the web hosting and digital media industry, providing large income windfalls that they see as sufficiently non-baseball-related that there is no obligation to use it for the teams' payrolls. What else are they doing as a cartel? Leveraged buyouts? Buying a bunch of timber and cropland like the Harvard endowment?
   11. Ray (CTL) Posted: January 29, 2018 at 09:37 PM (#5615444)
In that case, hopefully the MLBAM revenue that has nothing to do with the MLB doesn't go to the owners either. But where does it go?


Straight to the teams.
   12. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: January 30, 2018 at 08:47 AM (#5615594)
That sounds a bit odd to me, to be honest. We know that unlike most corporate capitalists, the owners are in a privileged position where the law lets them form a cartel, bargain collectively, pool and redistribute revenue to ensure all franchises are on sound financial footing in perpetuity, and this is justified because they are a public resource that provides baseball-related entertainment to us all.

And now, another thing the owners join together to do with their money is venture capitalism in the web hosting and digital media industry, providing large income windfalls that they see as sufficiently non-baseball-related that there is no obligation to use it for the teams' payrolls. What else are they doing as a cartel? Leveraged buyouts? Buying a bunch of timber and cropland like the Harvard endowment?


Not sure why it's odd. They started MLBAM to market and monetize the sport in the online and mobile channels. That's a pretty obvious thing for a league to do. Along the way, they got really good at doing online/mobile video, and other leagues and entities started hiring them to do the work for them. Those are the profits that bypass MLB revenue.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

News

All News | Prime News

Old-School Newsstand


BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
TedBerg
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogPhillies To Sign Andrew McCutchen
(18 - 5:11am, Dec 12)
Last: John Reynard

NewsblogJayson Stark wins Baseball Hall of Fame's Spink Award
(47 - 2:36am, Dec 12)
Last: Lance Reddick! Lance him!

NewsblogOT - NBA Thread (2018-19 season kickoff edition)
(3543 - 2:25am, Dec 12)
Last: maccoach57

Hall of Merit2019 Hall of Merit Ballot Discussion
(314 - 12:58am, Dec 12)
Last: Jaack

NewsblogBlue Jays cut ties with Tulowitzki
(8 - 12:57am, Dec 12)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogSmith, Baines elected to Baseball Hall of Fame
(529 - 12:54am, Dec 12)
Last: Jay Z

NewsblogAnalytics' rise a leading topic at Winter Meetings
(15 - 12:42am, Dec 12)
Last: Dr. Vaux

NewsblogMets, Yankees, Marlins In Talks On Three-Team Deal - MLB Trade Rumors
(55 - 12:30am, Dec 12)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogWhite Sox acquire Ivan Nova from Pirates to strengthen starting pitching depth
(4 - 12:08am, Dec 12)
Last: asinwreck

NewsblogThibs' Hall of Fame Tracker
(425 - 11:56pm, Dec 11)
Last: Kiko Sakata

NewsblogOT: Soccer Thread (The Berhalter Thread?)
(141 - 11:07pm, Dec 11)
Last: J. Sosa

NewsblogPrimer Dugout (and link of the day) 12-11-2018
(18 - 10:55pm, Dec 11)
Last: Der-K: at 10% emotional investment

NewsblogBradford: Dustin Pedroia and his biggest battle | WEEI
(1 - 10:31pm, Dec 11)
Last: ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick

NewsblogOT - Catch-All Pop Culture Extravaganza (December 2018)
(466 - 9:09pm, Dec 11)
Last: Davo and his Moose Tacos

Hall of MeritMock 2019 Hall of Fame Election Results
(6 - 8:21pm, Dec 11)
Last: Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant

Page rendered in 0.2735 seconds
46 querie(s) executed