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The MLB and MLBPA took another step in the wrong direction, and owners demanded the help of federal mediation to solve their problems.
With spring training right around the corner, pitchers and catchers might as well stay far away from facilities in Arizona and Florida — they won’t be in use for quite some time.
Both the players and owners have taken incremental baby steps towards fixing what would otherwise be a monumental collapse, delaying the baseball season in the process. Players want their fair share of revenue, and are willing to listen on proposals such as an expanded playoff field to do so.
The current issue which looms large is, as Yahoo’s Hannah Keyser puts it, “the league’s attempt to curtail spending at the upper end of the sport.”
Players, of course, don’t want to curtail spending in any way, as it’ll likely mean less revenue for them in the long run.
Jeff Passan: MLB, MLBPA could need a mediator
Mediator looks and sounds a lot like meteor, and frankly the sentiment is fairly similar in this case. MLB and MLBPA are headed for ugly divorce proceedings. The only difference is in this case the two sides need each other, and must find a way to reconcile the marriage.
Good luck with that. Maybe we can call it really, really ugly relationship therapy?
The following, per a tweet by Passan, paints the picture as clearly as possible:
“Major League Baseball today requested immediate assistance of a federal mediator to help resolve the sport’s lockout, sources told ESPN. Under their request, the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service would help assist with the proceedings.”
MLB lockout: What is a federal mediator?
Per a quick google search, “the goal of a federal mediator is the listen carefully and to help both parties see all sides of the issues causing the issues.”
In collective bargaining agreement talks, that takes on a much tougher role. A mediator will not simply arrive with an agreement in mind. If anything, it gives both the players and owners someone to direct their anger towards, rather than merely yelling across the table in Rob Manfred’s direction.