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Time's Up! We Need an Answer MLB Commish

Written by:
Don Shapiro
Published on:
Jun/16/2020

Players say they are ready and now the 2020 season decision is in the hands of Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred's hands.


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"The owners are 100 percent committed to getting baseball back on the field," Rob Manfred said on Monday.

Jeff Passan says "Then just do it".

Manfred's "season might not take place" scenario only lasted a hot minute. 

It felt like a dark moment until the swift and damning fallout made clear that the public clamoring for the sport despite its monthslong fight over money would not accept what Manfred was postulating. Little had substantively changed from five days earlier, when Manfred said "unequivocally we are going to play Major League Baseball this year," guaranteeing it "100 percent." His about-face came on the heels of MLB Players Association executive director Tony Clark suggesting "further dialogue with the league would be futile" and asking Manfred to implement a schedule for the season, as the parties' March 26 agreement allows him.

"It's time to get back to work," Clark said in a statement. "Tell us when and where."

Manfred has already acknowledged that the back-and-forth between the league and Players Union is "just a disaster for our game, absolutely no question about it. It shouldn't be happening, and it's important that we find a way to get past it and get the game back on the field for the benefit of our fans."

The implication being that the owners negotiated in bad faith, and that they did not attempt to play as many games as possible. (Nearly all of the owners' offers that have leaked have them paying the players for 50-something games, regardless of how many games the players are actually asked to partake in.) 

As such, Manfred and the league would still prefer to reach an agreement with the union, or, alternatively, to secure assurance from the union that no grievance will be filed if Manfred were to impose a season. It seems unlikely that the union would sign away its right to a grievance, given its claim that the owners are refusing to adhere to a March agreement between the sides. 

- Don Shapiro, Gambling911.com

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