All of a sudden, the wheels are turning on the 2022 MLB season, and Dodgers fans who’ve thrown all their energy behind the Rams and Lakers might need to devote at least a slice to their baseball team as well.
No, an MLB/MLBPA deal is not quite around the corner just yet. But for the first time in this entire process, the two sides managed to have concrete discussion on Monday afternoon, and the session did not end with one side storming out in a huff seconds after a proposal was dropped on the table.
Instead, the momentum has been sustained from this two-and-a-half hour bargaining session, and the two sides will meet yet again on Tuesday.
Last time, on Jan. 13, the MLBPA’s knee-jerk reaction to ownership’s proposal was that it was so offensive as to cause a near-immediate break in the discussion. As Jeff Passan stated that day, “This is a long process. Significant progress before March 1, when games are threatened, could be minimal.”
Now? The two sides, though hardly in accordance, seem to have found enough common ground to continue the conversation — or, at least, they’ve recognized the situation’s gravity.
Dodgers Update: MLB and MLBPA finally make progress in CBA talks
Tuesday’s bargaining session, while not a landmark victory, certainly represented the clearest progress yet towards a resolution, instilling hope that the 2022 season might not be dramatically shortened after all.
Among the discernible progress, the MLBPA has already relented a bit, removing their controversial proposal to move up players’ free agency timeline, allowing them to experience significant paydays prior to six years of service time.
Yes, it’s fair to view this development as the MLBPA caving a bit in order to speed up the process; Tony Clark’s leadership has been notorious for such behavior over the years. Now, we anxiously await to see what, if anything, they’ve extracted from the owners’ side to move the process along.
If we’re truly moving along here, the Dodgers have a number of unsettled questions that are central to their contention chances. Now that we’ve moved forward, problems that lingered in December have returned to front of mind.
Max Scherzer remains a Met. Corey Seager is still a Ranger. Kenley Jansen must either be re-signed or replaced.
The good news? All of these personnel problems are far more palatable than dreaming of a season that has no desire to exist at all.