After 99 days of contentious negotiations between Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association, the two sides finally came to terms on a tentative Collective Bargaining Agreement on Wednesday afternoon, officially ending the lockout and bringing baseball back on the calendar very soon.
BREAKING: Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association have reached a tentative agreement on a new labor deal, sources tell ESPN. While it still needs to be ratified by both parties, that is expected to be a formality, and when it is:— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 10, 2022
Baseball is back.
Details are still coming in as of now, but what we do know is that the season is scheduled to begin on April 7, which for the Angels would be at home against the Houston Astros. Players will also being reporting to camps as soon as tomorrow, and Spring Training games will begin somewhere between March 18-20.
Contrary to yesterday’s report, there will be 162 games on the 2022 schedule, with the league adding a few days onto the end of the year and some doubleheaders in the middle of it to make up for the week that was previously cancelled. There are also numerous different rule changes reported as part of the deal, the most notable of which being the expansion of the playoffs to 12 teams. We will also be seeing the return of nine-inning doubleheaders and the elimination of the runner on second during extra innings, as well as a ban on shifts and the enforcement of a pitch clock.
In the new CBA ...— Alden González (@Alden_Gonzalez) March 10, 2022
* 12-team playoffs
* Universal DH
* option limits
* draft lottery
* 45-day notice for rule changes
* full year of service time for top rookies
* international draft (potentially)
* no more qualifying offers (potentially)
* jersey/helmet advertising
The financials surrounding the game have also been altered in many different ways. The big one was the Competitive Balance Tax, which will be raised from $210 million up to $230 million in the first year and will reach up to $244 million in the final year of the CBA. The minimum salary has also been raised up to $700,000 and will rise an additional $20,000 per year, and a $50 million bonus pool for pre-arbitration players has also been put into effect.
Some final details in new CBA, per source:— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) March 10, 2022
* $50M pre-arbitration bonus pool
* Minimum salary of $700,000 in 2022, increasing by $20K per year
* CBT $230M in 2022, rising annually to $233M, $237M, $241M, $244M
* 6-pick draft lottery
* Universal DH
* 12-team expanded postseason
Finally, the transaction freeze that has been ongoing will be lifted as soon as 3 P.M. today, meaning teams will be free to make trades and players will be free to sign contracts in the very near future. Given the big number of free agents still needing teams and the short amount of time until things pick up, it’s likely we will see a flurry of activity here soon.
We will try to provide further updates as they come, but for now, it’s celebration time. Baseball is officially back.