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  1. #1
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    MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    I really wish a thread like this wouldn't be necessary but my guess is we'll be hearing about this topic all year long.

    So today MLB announced they are proposing a 154-game schedule for 2021, ST delayed until mid-March, and an opening day delayed until the end of April. It also includes scheduled doubleheaders and the universal DH, with players receiving full pay based on a regular 162-game season.

    It also proposes a 14-team playoff format with approx. $81M in revenues (a record-high established in 2019) available to share with those 14 teams.

    The players are expected to turn down the proposal some time this week.
    *******************************************
    https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2021/...o-players.html

    I understand the need to negotiate Covid rules during these continued unprecedented times, but this type of stuff IMO really can hurt the PR and the marketing of the sport this season.

    IMO much of this should be negotiated behind closed doors, and I think we as fans should only be hearing about the reached agreement - and it should be reached this week. I'm guessing we're all tired of the posturing and the business aspect that's going on, and we're generally feeling that the fan base preferences are coming in 3rd place behind MLB and the players union.

    The players' union needs to step very lightly here.

    What's your opinion about all this?
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  2. #2
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    I don’t care how many games are in the season, but more playoff teams encourages mediocrity. I’m against that.

    Then again, I also think the shift is the dumbest thing the sport has allowed to happen to itself, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.
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  3. #3
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by ojo View Post
    I don’t care how many games are in the season, but more playoff teams encourages mediocrity. I’m against that.

    Then again, I also think the shift is the dumbest thing the sport has allowed to happen to itself, so take my opinion with a grain of salt.
    You're not alone on that front. The extreme shifting sucks the life out of so many situations. I'm fine with shifts, but having your third baseman become a second right fielder is dumb to permit. Why not have him stand just in front of the batters box completely blocking the hitters field of vision if you can put them anywhere?

    There's a reason there's a goaltending rule in basketball. It's boring to watch offenses smash liners at an extra infielder who turns it into a routine play.

  4. #4
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by False1 View Post
    You're not alone on that front. The extreme shifting sucks the life out of so many situations. I'm fine with shifts, but having your third baseman become a second right fielder is dumb to permit. Why not have him stand just in front of the batters box completely blocking the hitters field of vision if you can put them anywhere?

    There's a reason there's a goaltending rule in basketball. It's boring to watch offenses smash liners at an extra infielder who turns it into a routine play.
    What is the ruling for a fielder hit by a pitched ball?
    Forgive me for taking the Contrarian view

  5. #5
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    https://www.pinstripealley.com/2021/...ates-cleveland

    "The Pirates, after dealing away Jameson Taillon to those very same Yankees, only have $3 million in committed spending after 2021. Cleveland dealt Francisco Lindor and his $20-odd million dollar salary to the Mets, and are projected to open the season with less than $40 million in payroll. In fact, five of the 30 MLB clubs are projected to begin the 2021 campaign with payrolls under $50 million.

    Herein lies the problem that the MLBPA faces, both in 2021 and as the collective bargaining agreement expires in December. The union has fought so hard against a formal salary cap, and yet MLB has collectively treated the CBT threshold as a cap, while letting the bottom end of payroll drop off. Cleveland’s Opening Day payroll is set to be the lowest since the 2012 Astros, and Pittsburgh isn’t far behind on that list. Meanwhile, the upper band of payroll hasn’t grown — teams at the high end were spending more a decade ago, and revenues have exploded since then.

    This sounds like small market vs. big market

    IMO there shouldn't be a LT for exceeding a ceiling if there isn't a LT for not meeting a minimum floor. MLB should be encouraging spending, not penalizing it.

    The ceiling hasn't been adjusted enough over the last decade, as big market teams don't want to spend more and get penalized more because of it, just because their revenues have increased.
    "Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, 'Sure, every time.'" -- Mickey Mantle

  6. #6
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by False1 View Post
    You're not alone on that front. The extreme shifting sucks the life out of so many situations. I'm fine with shifts, but having your third baseman become a second right fielder is dumb to permit. Why not have him stand just in front of the batters box completely blocking the hitters field of vision if you can put them anywhere?

    There's a reason there's a goaltending rule in basketball. It's boring to watch offenses smash liners at an extra infielder who turns it into a routine play.
    I agree as well, and am surprised to find people think likewise - i thought everyone was just on the "well why don't the hitters just bunt the other way" train. I had given up.

    I don't know why everyone is so into watching lineouts to the shortstop playing shallow right field. It's also inherently unfair to left-handed hitters (there is no counter-argument to this), since RHH can't be shifted on the same way with 1B needing to be covered.

    Basketball also has defensive 3 seconds so Giannis can't just stand there and prevent any drive to the basket. Good rules exist to make the gameplay better - I feel like everyone is so afraid of change that they refuse to think we can make a rule to prevent cheat-code defenses.

    On the negotiations - I think the union is afraid of agreeing to anything at all, worried they'll look stupid. They'd prefer to make Manfred force something, with the hope that instead HE will look stupid.

  7. #7
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    As expected, the players' union rejected MLB's proposal without offering any type of counter-proposal. No shortened season. No universal DH (as of yet). No expanded playoffs (as of yet)

    Spring Training camps open in two weeks (!)
    "Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, 'Sure, every time.'" -- Mickey Mantle

  8. #8
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Enjoy the baseball this year folks. May be the last we see for awhile

  9. #9
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by YankeePride1967 View Post
    Enjoy the baseball this year folks. May be the last we see for awhile
    Yeah, both sides just don't see the Big Picture that I'm seeing - the chance to come out with a new CBA smelling like a rose, instead of stinking up the place......

    Bunch of babies, I tell ya......it embarrasses me.
    "Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, 'Sure, every time.'" -- Mickey Mantle

  10. #10
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2021/...-proposal.html

    The league would have been willing to push back the season without expanded playoffs and the universal DH had the MLBPA made a counterproposal. The union declined to do so, as the players would rather start the season on time because of concerns over injuries.

    Games being played ^^^^^^
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  11. #11
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by sjb23 View Post
    Yeah, both sides just don't see the Big Picture that I'm seeing - the chance to come out with a new CBA smelling like a rose, instead of stinking up the place......

    Bunch of babies, I tell ya......it embarrasses me.
    We should all be used to this by now. 1994 they cancelled the end of the season and playoffs. How much harm did that do to baseball?

  12. #12

    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    The problem is after being the gold standard for unions for decades, the MLBPA has gotten destroyed in the last few CBA negotiations. Ever since they fired the lawyers and professional negotiators and let former players like Tony Clark take the lead, they have been getting embarrassed and the worst part is they don't even realize it until years later. The players are hungry to renegotiate the deal but it falls at a time when there is so much uncertainty around the sport. No one can predict when fans will be allowed back without restriction let alone have any clue to what extent they will return at that point. Will the Yankees draw 3.5 million again or under 2?

    I thought the owners 50/50 split of revenue offer last year was incredibly fair and exactly what sjb was suggesting when he said a chance to look good and be there for fans but the players tried to play hardball and got embarrassed again. Overall they played the minimum amount of games and ended up getting far less money than they would have overall. And this off-season is a direct result of that.

    I feel for the players, I really do but they have made no effort to change their poor leadership, and are stuck renegotiating a CBA at the absolute worst time. This is just going to be incredibly ugly and it's hard to blame either side. Honestly, the best thing to do is negotiate a very short deal.

  13. #13
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by sd. View Post
    The problem is after being the gold standard for unions for decades, the MLBPA has gotten destroyed in the last few CBA negotiations. Ever since they fired the lawyers and professional negotiators and let former players like Tony Clark take the lead, they have been getting embarrassed and the worst part is they don't even realize it until years later. The players are hungry to renegotiate the deal but it falls at a time when there is so much uncertainty around the sport. No one can predict when fans will be allowed back without restriction let alone have any clue to what extent they will return at that point. Will the Yankees draw 3.5 million again or under 2?

    I thought the owners 50/50 split of revenue offer last year was incredibly fair and exactly what sjb was suggesting when he said a chance to look good and be there for fans but the players tried to play hardball and got embarrassed again. Overall they played the minimum amount of games and ended up getting far less money than they would have overall. And this off-season is a direct result of that.

    I feel for the players, I really do but they have made no effort to change their poor leadership, and are stuck renegotiating a CBA at the absolute worst time. This is just going to be incredibly ugly and it's hard to blame either side. Honestly, the best thing to do is negotiate a very short deal.
    IMO it's not hard to blame both sides. Why haven't the PR folks brainwashed both sides to only think about how to look like the heros we need them to be, instead of who has the upper hand - which seems to be taking precedent.

    What a stale, stale way of thinking by folks who are making more money than most Americans do, during a time when the economy (both MLB revenue and the country's economy) needs a boost, not a setback.
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  14. #14

    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by sjb23 View Post
    IMO it's not hard to blame both sides.
    Are you going to tell the players "I know you have been playing under a system that favored the owners a lot more than you intended for the last 5 years, but sorry. Take one for the team this time (again) for the sake of the fans."

    Are you going to tell the owners "I know there haven't been fans allowed in the stands for a year and you are literally losing money on every single regular season game played, you have no idea how attendance will look long term or if there will be a drastic and permanent cultural shift on you business, but take one for the team and spend like things are completely normal. Oh yeah, and give the players back some power because they didn't like the current deal. It's what is good for the fans."

    I mean with so much unknown with the revenue going forward, if they players aren't willing to take a percentage split, even temporarily, where do you go from there?

  15. #15
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    https://sny.tv/articles/yankees-gerr...lb-labor-talks

    Cole & Britton are both on the union's committees. IMO here's some issues the union wants to re-negotiate with MLB:

    * The union wants shorter times to be eligible for arbitration and free agency

    * The veterans are slowly being "squeezed out" due to the surplus of younger, inexpensive talent, resulting in shorter-term contracts and lower $$$ available

    * They want more teams to be consistently competitive, and they suggest the current draft system incents many organizations to rebuild instead of re-tool.

    * They want organizations incented to compete, and organizations that are competing not to be penalized - sounds like they're in favor of a payroll floor and a lower luxury tax table

    The owners want expanded playoffs & to share expansion club fees ASAP - which will lead to some mega-negotiations with the players. What will they be willing to give up in exchange?

    I'm sure there's lots of other issues both sides are wanting to negotiate. I'm hoping we can discuss these negotiations in this thread throughout the season.

    IMO greed corrupts us as a society and as individuals. Both these sides have to realize that a work stoppage might/will lead to the further demise of this sport.

    I'm starting to think the eternal internal struggle between the owners - big revenue organizations vs. small market owners - will be a major subplot in the months to come.
    "Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, 'Sure, every time.'" -- Mickey Mantle

  16. #16
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by sjb23 View Post
    https://sny.tv/articles/yankees-gerr...lb-labor-talks

    Cole & Britton are both on the union's committees. IMO here's some issues the union wants to re-negotiate with MLB:

    * The union wants shorter times to be eligible for arbitration and free agency

    * The veterans are slowly being "squeezed out" due to the surplus of younger, inexpensive talent, resulting in shorter-term contracts and lower $$$ available

    * They want more teams to be consistently competitive, and they suggest the current draft system incents many organizations to rebuild instead of re-tool.

    * They want organizations incented to compete, and organizations that are competing not to be penalized - sounds like they're in favor of a payroll floor and a lower luxury tax table

    The owners want expanded playoffs & to share expansion club fees ASAP - which will lead to some mega-negotiations with the players. What will they be willing to give up in exchange?

    I'm sure there's lots of other issues both sides are wanting to negotiate. I'm hoping we can discuss these negotiations in this thread throughout the season.

    IMO greed corrupts us as a society and as individuals. Both these sides have to realize that a work stoppage might/will lead to the further demise of this sport.

    I'm starting to think the eternal internal struggle between the owners - big revenue organizations vs. small market owners - will be a major subplot in the months to come.
    Thanks for this. Very interesting.

    It appears, if it’s big vs small, the way to do it is the NFL way? Salary cap.
    Or some combination of payroll floor and salary cap. Forget about luxury tax.

    Would Union go for it when they realize small payroll teams would have to reach the payroll floor ?

    Whatever happens there is only one winner each year. The 2015 KC Royals won with a $115mil payroll, $100mil under the Yankees that year.
    And of course Tampa Bay might actually suffer having to go up to a payroll floor. 😀

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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Based on 2019, last full season, if payroll floor was $100mil and payroll cap was $200 mil-

    3 teams were over $200mil so salaries lost would be $27mil

    10 teams were under $100mil so salaries gained would be $206mil.

    ** 2 under $100mil made playoffs out of 10
    1 over $200 mil made playoffs out of 3

  18. #18
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by Portbb View Post
    Thanks for this. Very interesting.

    It appears, if it’s big vs small, the way to do it is the NFL way? Salary cap.
    Or some combination of payroll floor and salary cap. Forget about luxury tax.

    Would Union go for it when they realize small payroll teams would have to reach the payroll floor ?


    Whatever happens there is only one winner each year. The 2015 KC Royals won with a $115mil payroll, $100mil under the Yankees that year.
    And of course Tampa Bay might actually suffer having to go up to a payroll floor. 😀
    Regarding just the payroll floor issue - IMO it's kind of like an ante-up in poker. If you want to play the game, there's an admission charge.

    The floor should be established to incent every organization to compete, to get their biggest bang for their payroll buck each year. Perhaps there should be a penalty tax for teams that still choose to stay below the floor and are just not competitive? If you're going to tax them at the top, then tax them on the bottom also - it's only fair, IMO.
    "Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, 'Sure, every time.'" -- Mickey Mantle

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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by sjb23 View Post
    Regarding just the payroll floor issue - IMO it's kind of like an ante-up in poker. If you want to play the game, there's an admission charge.

    The floor should be established to incent every organization to compete, to get their biggest bang for their payroll buck each year. Perhaps there should be a penalty tax for teams that still choose to stay below the floor and are just not competitive? If you're going to tax them at the top, then tax them on the bottom also - it's only fair, IMO.
    Except that two below floor would be Tampa and Oakland and they’re successful teams if making the playoffs is success. They don’t need to be incented with a floor to compete. They just do it. You couldn’t charge them with a penalty tax since they’re more successful than most.

  20. #20
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by Portbb View Post
    Based on 2019, last full season, if payroll floor was $100mil and payroll cap was $200 mil-

    3 teams were over $200mil so salaries lost would be $27mil

    10 teams were under $100mil so salaries gained would be $206mil.
    What do you mean by "salaries lost or gained"?

    I wonder if the whole system would work if it's based on the average club's payroll - a mid-point line. Those teams flagrantly above it (20% over the average?) are taxed as well as those teams flagrantly below it (the same 20% margin)
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  21. #21
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by Portbb View Post
    Except that two below floor would be Tampa and Oakland and they’re successful teams if making the playoffs is success. They don’t need to be incented with a floor to compete. They just do it. You couldn’t charge them with a penalty tax since they’re more successful than most.
    Can't those two organizations 1) theoretically be even more successful by spending more to get to the floor? 2) realize it's all for the good of the whole?

    I think it would be very refreshing (and profitable) for the sport as a whole if more teams competed for a spot in an expanded playoff format.
    "Somebody once asked me if I ever went up to the plate trying to hit a home run. I said, 'Sure, every time.'" -- Mickey Mantle

  22. #22
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by sjb23 View Post
    Regarding just the payroll floor issue - IMO it's kind of like an ante-up in poker. If you want to play the game, there's an admission charge.

    The floor should be established to incent every organization to compete, to get their biggest bang for their payroll buck each year. Perhaps there should be a penalty tax for teams that still choose to stay below the floor and are just not competitive? If you're going to tax them at the top, then tax them on the bottom also - it's only fair, IMO.
    Quote Originally Posted by sjb23 View Post
    Can't those two organizations 1) theoretically be even more successful by spending more to get to the floor? 2) realize it's all for the good of the whole?

    I think it would be very refreshing (and profitable) for the sport as a whole if more teams competed for a spot in an expanded playoff format.
    There appear to be some layers to this Payroll Floor idea. At first glance it appears to be fairer to insist that lower salaried teams reach a payroll floor (say 100-120mil as an example) or pay a penalty tax as you described.

    One of the challenges is that not all low payroll teams would be more successful by spending more, just like not all high payroll teams are successful because they have a high payroll. The wins for one team have to come with losses for another team.

    It could be that high payroll teams DO NOT want low payroll teams to spend more because they can then gain access to their best players in a trade.
    It could be that high payroll teams are against a payroll floor because that would mean less access to the low payroll teams player in the year before Free Agency or after they sign an extension with the low payroll team in a trade.

    Prominent examples of low payroll teams trading their best players due to payroll concerns -
    Gerrit Cole from the Pirates to Houston in Jan 2018
    Aroldis Chapman from the Reds to NYY in Dec 2015
    Zack Greinke from Royals to Mil in Dec 2010 because his salary went from 7mil to 13.5mil
    Paul Goldschmidt from AZ to St. L in Dec 2018.
    Christian Yelich from Mia to Mil in Jan 2018
    Giancarlo Stanton from Mia to NYY in Dec 2017 because they didn't want to pay the contract they gave him in Dec 2014
    Blake Snell from Rays to SD in Dec 2020 because his salary went from 7.6 mil to 11mil


    If the Pittsburgh Pirates had a payroll floor why on earth would they have traded Cole in 2018? Wouldn't they have used that mandatory payroll floor money to offer him a big extension? Same with Blake Snell and the Rays. Same with Machado and the Orioles. And most free agents.

    Lots of layers.

  23. #23
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by Portbb View Post
    Except that two below floor would be Tampa and Oakland and they’re successful teams if making the playoffs is success. They don’t need to be incented with a floor to compete. They just do it. You couldn’t charge them with a penalty tax since they’re more successful than most.
    Or you could have an either/or clause in there. Teams that don't meet the salary floor AND don't meet some sort of team-based performance clause (e.g. at least one 81 win season in a two year span perhaps?) forfeit x% of their revenue share? And like the lux tax the first time your trip it the penalty kicks in and gets worse until you remedy it?

    If a team can operate in that sweet spot where they don't overpay for talent but build a system where they can win (or at least not consistently have tanked seasons) then more power to them. But teams that simply don't want to invest and innovate cuz it's easier to sell of parts when they start getting expensive and collect their revenue sharing checks need a fire lit under them.

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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by False1 View Post
    Or you could have an either/or clause in there. Teams that don't meet the salary floor AND don't meet some sort of team-based performance clause (e.g. at least one 81 win season in a two year span perhaps?) forfeit x% of their revenue share? And like the lux tax the first time your trip it the penalty kicks in and gets worse until you remedy it?

    If a team can operate in that sweet spot where they don't overpay for talent but build a system where they can win (or at least not consistently have tanked seasons) then more power to them. But teams that simply don't want to invest and innovate cuz it's easier to sell of parts when they start getting expensive and collect their revenue sharing checks need a fire lit under them.
    This thread is about the labor negotiations, and the union is focused on increasing the revenue that goes to players, not creating loopholes for teams to keep salaries low.

    I believe in the NBA, if a team doesn't hit the floor, they pay out the amount up to the floor to their players, which you could do in MLB also. I suspect the union would look for something like that if they want to a floor/ceiling paradigm. And I suspect teams like Oakland and Tampa would find ways to game that (e.g., taking on bad contracts to get prospects, etc.) to their advantage.

  25. #25
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    Re: MLB vs MLBPA 2021 negotiations

    Quote Originally Posted by YFIB View Post
    This thread is about the labor negotiations, and the union is focused on increasing the revenue that goes to players, not creating loopholes for teams to keep salaries low.

    I believe in the NBA, if a team doesn't hit the floor, they pay out the amount up to the floor to their players, which you could do in MLB also. I suspect the union would look for something like that if they want to a floor/ceiling paradigm. And I suspect teams like Oakland and Tampa would find ways to game that (e.g., taking on bad contracts to get prospects, etc.) to their advantage.
    Well pardon me then. Although I'm not sure what loophole would be created by this very raw idea. Sure, if you can get a hard floor and teams that don't spend to it pay up to it, fine. I'm sure a number of owners will balk at that, particularly the ones that tend to remain competitive with payrolls in the lower quartile of the league. So, perhaps a potential compromise would be to turn off the revenue spigot for teams that are happy to put those dollars in their pocket year over year without investing in their players and their system and continuing to field losing teams.

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