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Report: MLB rejects players’ 114-game proposal, working on ‘shorter season’

Negotiations continue for starting the 2020 MLB season. We break down the latest news as the owners will not counter the players’ 114-game proposal.

A general view of Oriole Park at Camden Yards on March 13, 2020 in Baltimore, Maryland. Major League Baseball cancelled spring training games and has delayed opening day by at least two weeks due to COVID-19. Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

Major League Baseball remains on hold as both sides try to negotiate a way to start the season. The owners have rejected the players proposal of a 114-game season, according to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal. They will not counter on that, but are “talk[ing] about playing a shorter season without fans, and that it is ready to discuss additional ideas with the union.”

The owners first proposal in the current negotiations was for an 82-game season with significant salary reductions beyond the proration negotiated in March. The players were not pleased, and countered with a 114-game schedule and the prorated salary structure that had been agreed upon in March. The big difference was a willingness to defer salary if the playoffs were canceled due to a second wave of Covid-19.

We seem to be going nowhere with this negotiation for the time being. There were rumblings a deal needed to be done by later this week to get the season started by the first week of July, but it’s hard to see that happening. The owners’ decision to start talking about a shorter season would indicate they realize this isn’t happening on that timeline.

MLB still has some time to get something sorted out, but it’s hard to be optimistic with the intransigence at this point.