Spring Training Will Probably Be Delayed
Once the Super Bowl is over, I go into baseball mode. I still love watching a baseball game on television and in person. I was born and raised a Cubs fan, and I literally broke down in tears when we finally won the World Series after 108 years. I was living in Columbia at the time, and I had just arrived when the Kansas City Royals went to back to back World Series and winning in 2015. I have always had respect for the St Louis Cardinals and they way they run their organization. The ballparks in St Louis and Kansas City, just beautiful places to watch a game.
Spring Training normally would begin in a few weeks. That will not be happening. There is a lockout going on right now. The league and union went over a month without meeting after MLB implemented the lockout on Dec. 2. They're far apart on key economic issues, including the luxury tax, revenue sharing and minimum player salaries.
I do have to say, on one hand, I think a lot of major league baseball players are significantly overpaid. There are guaranteed contracts. It is not unusual for teams who have large revenue streams like the Yankees/Red Sox/Dodgers to name a few who have often spent more than others to get the best players. Then you have teams who could spend more money that will not do so.
The MLB players union on Friday rejected MLB's request for a federal mediator to join the sport's labor negotiations, one day after the league submitted the request. Here is a quote from the players union:
"Two months after implementing their lockout, and just two days after committing to Players that a counterproposal would be made, the owners refused to make a counter, and instead requested mediation," the statement reads.
"After consultation with our Executive Board, and taking into account a variety of factors, we have declined this request.
"The clearest path to a fair and timely agreement is to get back to the table. Players stand ready to negotiate."
If you remember in 1994, a baseball strike took away the World Series. You literally have billionaires and multi-millionaires fighting over money. If there is a delay in this season for an extended period of time, you will lose fans. They already are, as more young people are gravitating to other sports that move faster like basketball.
Both sides seem pretty dug in, and do not expect Spring Training to begin on time, or the regular season. I am almost to the point where I am ready to throw in the towel and say 'Screw It' to both sides. Let them strike and lose the whole season. Serves them right. Yahoo did a nice article on this lockout and you can read that HERE.