Where Did It All Go Wrong For Baseball in Last 24 Hours?
What a fucking roller coaster. I don’t usually swear in the first line of a blog post, but with the talk around baseball, it feels justified. Baseball seemed on its way back. Rob Manfred and Tony Clark sat together like adults and hammered out a deal. That was the notion all of us got on Wednesday afternoon. By Thursday, things got ugly very quickly. The players did not agree to deal they countered with a proposal that equated to more games, more postseason pay but agreed on certain things. The first two are the ones that matter though. Owners are furious, and we could be at a stalemate. How did things go so wrong then?
Manfred and Clark made the framework of a deal in Arizona. That happened. Clark wants to deny that didn’t occur, but my feelings are he is not being truthful. All indications from Jon Heyman and others made it seem like it was a #DoneDeal (Shout out Shaka). I assume that a counterproposal was expected yet maybe not to the levels that Clark and the union put out today. At this point, neither man wants to cave and we’re back throwing fireballs at each other instead of making real progress. We’ll look back on how the act of social distancing played a factor in these two not spending more time together. The same goes for the players and owners.
Not many are optimistic that Manfred and Clark will get a deal done. I am. Why because nothing makes fucking sense right now. If the players lose out on 10 games and Manfred enacts the 50 game season, that is a major loss for them. The ‘When and where’ campaign which was great does look a bit hollow now if we’re being honest. If the owners don’t try and work on a new deal, they’re looked at as money-hungry rich guys who care about the profit versus the actual game they own.
Many people wondered out loud ‘Why can’t the owners just accept what the players want?’ And most times, that sounds crazy to me. But now? They absolutely should with minor tweaks if needed. Manfred rejected the deal already, but what if the owners came back with 66-69 games? That’s still a win for the players. The olive branch gets extended and you can start discussing the CBA on good terms for 2022. Maybe take back a little bit of the playoff revenue with the caveat that due to adding more games we have to take some of it back. At this point, no one is on the owners’ side even if the ‘when and where’ campaign died yesterday.
Let’s all pray to Uecker.