Key Proposals in Major League Baseball Labor Bargaining |

NEW YORK — Some of the key areas of collective bargaining between Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association from proposals through Feb. 17, as obtained by The Associated Press. This is only a partial list of negotiation topics:

Free Agency

MLB: Would retain existing system in which six seasons of major league service is required.

MLBPA: Would retain existing system, subject to agreement on its service time proposal.

Free Agent Draft Pick Pay

MLB and MLBPA: Agree to eliminate direct compensation for amateur draft pickers, which has existed since 1976 and has existed for qualified free agents since 2012.

MLB proposed that a team losing a free agent would receive draft compensation based on revenue-sharing status and whether a club had exceeded the luxury tax threshold. For a free agent who had spent the entire season with a team, there would be four pay tiers based on:

— $25 million in guaranteed salary or $18 million in average annual value (AAV),

— $55 million or $23 million AAV,

— PV of $100 million or $30 million,

— $150 million or $40 million AAV.

Salary arbitration

MLB: Would keep the current system for players with at least three years of service and less than six, plus the top 22% in terms of service time with at least two years but less than three, the threshold since 2013. The Super class 2 started in 1991 at 17%.

MLBPA: Would reduce eligibility to two years of major league service, plus the top 80 percent per time of service with at least two years but less than three. The MLBPA estimated an additional 98 players would become eligible after 2021 with a 2-year, 27-day lag. MLB estimated 97 others.

Pre-Arbitrage Bonus Pool

MLBPA: Proposed a new bonus pool for those not yet eligible for arbitration, which would share $115 million of central revenue, based on WAR, appearances on an all-MLB team and recognition such as the best position player, the best pitcher and the best rookie to be distributed among 150 players.

MLB: Would accept a new bonus pool, offering $15 million to be split among 30 players.

service time

MLBPA: Saying it would address his allegations of mishandling service time, proposes rookie-eligible players be credited with an additional year of major league service for the top 20 at every position in every league per WAR , or top seven, depending on position, and for the top five rookies of the year, the top three Rivera/Hoffman awards or the first or second all-MLB team.

MLB: Proposed that any rookie-eligible player with top-100 prospect status who accrues a full season of major league service would be eligible to earn their team up to two additional draft picks – one national and one international – if the MLBPA accepted an international project, which he opposed. The MLBPA would additionally agree to its own proposal, but with modifications.

luxury tax

The threshold was $210 million in 2021, with tax rates of 20% for the first offense, 30% for exceeding in consecutive years, and 50% for exceeding in three or more consecutive years. Supplements for exceeding $230 million and $250 million. The second threshold was $230 million last year, with tax rates of 32% for the first offender, 42% for the second and 62% for the third. The third threshold was $250 million, with tax rates of 62.5% for the first offender, 75% for the second and 95% for the third.

MLB: Proposed to increase threshold to $214 million in 2022 and 23. $216 million in 24, $218 million in 25 and $222 million in 26, with second threshold of $20 million above- above the first and the third threshold of $40 million above the first. MLB also proposed raising the tax rate to 50% if the first threshold is exceeded, 75% if the second is exceeded, and 100% if the third is exceeded, with no escalation rate for a team. exceeding in successive years. A team would lose a second-round pick for passing the second threshold rather than dropping 10 spots and would lose a first-round selection for passing the third threshold.

MLBPA: Proposed to raise threshold from $245 million for 2022 season. Threshold would increase to $273 million in 2026, maintain expired deal rates and eliminate non-cash penalties.

amateur draft

MLB: Proposed an NBA/NHL style lottery for the top three picks.

MLBPA: Accepted the concept of a weighted lottery but would increase the number of teams to eight and make adjustments intended to encourage competition.

Minimum wage

MLB: proposed increase from $570,500 to $630,000 in 2022 or, alternatively, a staggered minimum of $615,000 for initial major leaguers, $650,000 for players with one year of service and $725,000 for those with two years. The single tier would grow by $10,000 per year, reaching $670,000 by 2026. Each tier would grow by $10,000 per year, reaching $640,000, $690,000, and $740,000 by 2026.

MLBPA: Proposed raising it to $775,000 in 2022 and phasing it out to $875,000 by 2026.

Both sides have proposed increases to the minor league minimum for players with major league contracts, which in 2021 was $46,600 for a player signing their first major league contract and $93,000 for a player signing. a second or later contract in the major league.


MLB: Would expand the playoffs from 10 to 14 teams, with wildcards increasing from two per league to four. The division winner with the best record in each league would advance directly to the division series, and the other two division winners and wildcard teams would start in a best-of-three round.

The division winner with the second-best record would choose their opponent from the three lowest-ranked wildcard teams. The division winner with the third-best record could then choose from the two remaining wild cards. The top wild card would face the remaining team after the division winners made their picks.

MLBPA: Expanded playoffs to 12 teams and possible realignment to two divisions per league, subject to agreement on MLBPA economic proposals. A three-division plan would result in 8-16 more games and a two-division plan in 10-18.

Designated hitter

MLB offered to accept the MLBPA’s proposal to expand the designated hitter to the National League, subject to an agreement on the playoff expansion. The DH has been used in the American League since 1973 and was used in both leagues during the pandemic-shortened 2020 season.

amateur draft

The MLBPA offered to reduce the amateur draft from 40 rounds to 20, which MLB agreed to.

Uniform advertisements

MLB: Proposed adding advertising patches for uniforms and helmets.

MLBPA: Would agree, subject to agreement on MLBPA’s economic proposals.

Revenue sharing

MLBPA: Clubs’ proposed annual revenue sharing will be cut by $30 million.

MLB: Disputes calculation of MLBPA’s proposal and says it will not agree to any changes to a system largely in place since the 1997 agreement.

International Draft

MLB proposed an international draft, which the MLBPA long opposed.

Optional missions

MLB: Proposed limit of five optional minor league assignments in a season for a player as part of 28-item package that also includes MLBPA’s agreement to allow MLB to reduce the number of players with minor league contracts 180 to 150. per major league team in future seasons.

MLBPA: Proposed a limit of four optional assignments, unrelated to the minor league reserve minimum.

Field Rule Changes

MLB has proposed a joint committee, including at least four active players, to discuss potential on-field rule changes.


Five years.


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