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MLB, MLBPA Agree to New Collective Bargaining Agreement

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It has finally happened. What seemed nearly impossible at times has finally happened — MLB and the MLBA have agreed to a new collective bargaining agreement after a lockout spanning over three months long. The agreement is tentative, and still needs to be ratified, per ESPN’s Jeff Passan.

After continuous back and forth for the better part of the last three days, the league offered another proposal on Thursday afternoon and left it up to a vote from the MLBPA. The union agreed to the new deal, and Major League Baseball is officially back.

The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal detailed the last offer from the league, and the league did indeed bridge the gap on some of the economic focal points. The league increased the luxury tax thresholds, which will start at $230M in year one and climb to $244M by the final year of the CBA. Additionally, they increased their offer in the brand-new pre-arbitration pool by $10M to a total of $50M. Finally, the minimum salary would be $700K in year one, increasing to $780K by the final year of the agreement.

One of the biggest holdups in a deal was the MLB’s persistence of implementing an international draft beginning in 2024. Instead of automatically implementing it, the two sides have until July 25 to decide its fate. If the two sides agree to it, draft pick compensation will be removed, and if it is rejected, draft pick compensation will stay put.

This is all addition to the previous news that there will be a universal DH, a 12-team postseason, a draft lottery, efforts to prevent service-time manipulation and player option limits.

The spring training report date has been set for March 13 though players can report as soon as tomorrow, with games expected to begin around St. Patrick’s Day. The regular season is expected to begin the first week of April, with an anticipated start date of April 7. The season will be the full 162 games.

Upon news of the agreement, the transaction freeze has been lifted, and teams will be able to sign free agents, make trades, extend players, etc., beginning on Thursday. It is expected to be a a fast-paced frenzy as teams scramble to fill their roster needs as quickly as possible with the quick turnaround to Spring Training.

The final tally:

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