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MLB: Owners make another small step with latest offer

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 18: MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred visits "Mornings With Maria" with Maria Bartiromo at Fox Business Network Studios on December 18, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 18: MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred visits "Mornings With Maria" with Maria Bartiromo at Fox Business Network Studios on December 18, 2018 in New York City. (Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images) /
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The negotiation between MLB and the MLBPA continues to crawl along.

As more time goes by, the number of games that can be played in a potential 2020 season shrinks. But MLB and the MLB Players Association continue to creep along ever so slowly, making fans wonder if we’ll have any reasonable semblance of a season at all.

The latest offer from MLB proposes a 72-game season that would begin around July 14 and end Sept. 27, which is the league’s target date for ending the regular season. But, of course, the big sticking point here will be the money, and the players will be sure to reject this offer as well.

MLB has offered players 70 percent of their prorated salaries, with that number bumping up to 80 percent if the postseason is completed. The players would also get additional money from the postseason bonus pool, which would make their total take around 83 percent of their prorated salaries.

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This is an improvement over the league’s last offer, which called for a 76-game season. The players responded with an 89-game offer, and each offer they’ve made has called for players to get their full prorated salaries. This doesn’t sound like an issue the MLBPA will be willing to budge on in the slightest.

Conversely, the players have been wanting a longer season, since more games means more money for them. But the league is adamant that the regular season should end by Sept. 27 so the postseason doesn’t have to be rescheduled. The two sides will have to come to terms on those two points before any deal is reached.

They do seem to agree on an expanded postseason, which MLB will need to boost revenues. The league seems willing to give some ground on free agent compensation this offseason, so there is a basis for some common ground. But both sides are being sticklers for money.

We’ll probably continue to see offers go back and forth until they finally, at long last, reach a deal. It won’t be a particularly long season once it finally gets underway, but hopefully it can get started and finished before another outbreak happens.

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