The MLB lockout needs to end

Courtesy of

Jared Galanti, Columnist

The Major League Baseball (MLB) owners locked out the players as the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) between the two sides expired, on Dec. 2, 2021. This is the ninth work stoppage in MLB history and it needs to end as soon as possible. 

While work stoppages in the past have happened during the regular season and led to missed games, and in the case of the 1994 season the entire postseason was canceled, this work stoppage has been the stupidest one so far. 

When MLB locked out the players on Dec. 2, MLB commissioner Robert Manfred Jr. sent a letter to fans explaining why the lockout was necessary. In his letter, he states that while he was disappointed in not getting a deal with Major League Baseball Player Association (MLBPA), the best way to get a deal done while not missing any games in the 2022 season was to lock them out during the offseason.

“We believe that an offseason lockout is the best mechanism to protect the 2022 season,” Manfred said in the letter. “We hope that the lockout will jumpstart negotiations and get us to an agreement that will allow us to start the season on time.” 

It has been over two months since that letter was posted and the lockout is still ongoing. 

MLB waited over 40 days after the lockout started to make their first proposal to the MLBPA. The MLBPA has not been impressed with any proposal the MLB has given them, and they have the right to be angry.

There are three core issues that the MLBPA wants MLB to fix when it comes to the next agreement.


The MLBPA has wanted the MLB owners to actually invest in their teams. When teams fall out of their window of contention, it results in a term called tanking. Tanking is trying to lose as much as possible so you can get high picks in the MLB draft and get top talent for very cheap. 

An example of this could be the 2019 Seattle Mariners. After the 2018 season in which they missed the playoffs for the 17th year in a row, the Mariners decided to trade most of their older and costly players to accumulate prospects for the future. In doing so, the Mariners went from winning 89 games in 2018 to winning 68 games in 2019 and got the sixth pick in the 2020 draft. 

The MLBPA wants the owners to actually put a product on the field that fans would love to see play every day. 

Service Time Manipulation

Another big issue the MLBPA wants MLB to fix is service time manipulation. In its current system, teams have the ability to gain extra years of control of a player by simply not bringing him up to the big leagues when he is ready. 

An example of this is Kris Bryant. Bryant was the minor league player of the year in 2014, in which across two levels of the Chicago Cubs minor league system he hit .325 with 43 home runs and 110 RBI’s. There was no question that he was ready for the big leagues in 2015.

However, the Cubs decided to put him in triple A for the first few weeks of the season and then call him up to the big leagues. By doing this, the Cubs gained an extra year of control and allowed them to hold on to him for seven years instead of the usual six. 

The MLBPA wants the best young players to be in the majors if they are 100% ready for it as Bryant was. 

More Compensation

An outsider watching could think that this is a debate between millionaires and billionaires. However, that is not usually the case. Most MLB players with zero to three years of service time make less than a million dollars in salary. Most make the league minimum at $570,500 for a full season.  

Most of the players don’t even receive a million dollar salary until they are six to seven years into their career. The MLBPA wants the league minimum raised, so younger players are more compensated for their work. 

The MLBPA also wants a bonus pool of money to allow teams to give bonuses to players who win awards such as Rookie of the Year, MVP and the CY Young award. The MLBPA has made offers in the $100 million to $115 million range, split among all 30 teams (about $3.3 million per team). The MLB has stated that they want this as well, but have only offered $15 million to split among all 30 teams. 

The lockout has backfired on the MLB. They thought the players would cave in on the first offer given to them because they know they want the season to start on time. That hasn’t happened yet and we are getting closer and closer to the scheduled opening day on March 31.