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To me, baseball is like a constant. From the first week of April, to the last week of September, during almost everyday, there is baseball. Whether your team is destined to win the World Series, or destined to be the worst in the league, baseball was and will always be here.
When I first heard of a strike, I remember my parents reminiscing about the 1994 strike. While the Toronto Blue Jays weren’t that great of a team in those days, my parents among every other fan still watched them. It didn’t matter whether they were good, baseball was always on TV/Radio, so why not watch it? In 1994, there was no postseason. They didn’t even play past June. There was NO point. I really don’t know how I would have survived that season.
Thinking to the upcoming season, I don’t know how I will get through it with a strike or lockout. It’s the Blue Jays year, we can all feel it. But what’s the point of building a championship team, when there may not be a champion at all?
If you are not aware, on Thursday December 1, 2016, the current MLB Collective Bargaining agreement between Major League Baseball and its players comes to an end. However this year, there are many things that the players union will wants to fix, that MLB does not. To read all of the details, please visit this article that thurghly explains everything you need to know: http://www.foxsports.com/mlb/story/labor-peace-lockout-collective-bargaining-agreement-owners-players-baseball-112216.
In 1994, baseball in its entirety, lost a lot of its fans and followers. People didn’t understand (and still do not) why millionaires were arguing about money, when there are people around the world who make less than $1 a day.
And although many players claim they are not afraid of a lockout, I sure am. Writing about baseball is what I do, and what will I be doing for an entire year if it isn’t just that?
If a lockout does happen, I will be losing a lot of respect for the entire Major League Baseball, although I do understand the majority of the key points listed in the article above.
So, how does a lockout specifically affect our Blue Jays? Well, let me ask you this first. Haven’t you noticed that there haven’t been many big deals, trades or signings made recently? That’s because everyone is waiting to see what happens after December 1. Although the Blue Jays have already signed Kendrys Morales and Lourdes Gurriel Jr., there are still many holes that need to be filled. Such as new relievers, new outfielders, and more left handed batters. If a lockout or strike does proceed, everything related to the contracts or trades is either delayed or stopped entirely. And if you really think about it, time is moving fast. Pitchers and catchers report for spring training in mid-February, and it’s already the beginning of December.
What will happen to our team if there is a lockout? That’s the scary part… Nobody knows.
Well, it turns out now we know!
Just about 30 minutes ago (as I type this), MLB has officially signed onto a 5 – year agreement with the MLBPA. Here are the reported new guidelines (note: new guidelines are coming out as we speak, so make sure you follow me on twitter for new updates every hour. I also will list them below with the word NEW for the most recent one I have added):
- No 26th Roster Spot
- No International Draft
- Luxury tax threshold at $195 million for 2017, will grow to approximately $210 million over 5 years
- (NEW) All Star Game will no longer predict home field advantage for World Series, the team with the best record between the two that win the ALCS/NLCS with the best regular season record will gain home field advantage
- This will leave a lot of creativity for how they can split up the two teams, rather than just American League VS. National League, they can have the game teams as USA VS. International
- This could also be a poor choice because, there is a big difference between a hard division such as the AL East, rather than the NL East
- (NEW) Disabled List reduced from 15 days to 10 days, resulting in more DL trips for starting pitchers with off day/rotation shuffle.
- (NEW) Longer season extension, 187 from 183 days. Lets players rest and have a few more days off.
Beginning Next Offseason:
- Free agent compensation must be paid by teams over tax threshold only
- Draft pick will be below first round
Thankfully, we will definitely be having baseball over the next five seasons indefinitely!
PS. I’d like to welcome all of the new visitors of my blog that have arrived over the past few days. Thanks to some sharing on a massive Blue Jays Facebook group, my latest post about Kevin Pillar had over 2,000 views in just one day!