After negotiations between Major League Baseball and the Players Association (MLBPA) failed to produce a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA), team owners imposed a lockout that took immediate effect at the beginning of December.
It brought what had been an exciting stretch of free agency to a grinding halt and put a stop to potential trades, negotiations, or any form of contact between players and teams. Though not necessary, the MLB lockout was widely considered to be a foregone conclusion.
The league and union remain in serious disagreement over an array of matters, with competitive integrity and process to become a free agent among the most contentious matters.
Although those won’t be at the forefront of discussions, MLB and the MLBPA are due to meet Thursday, according to Evan Drellich of The Athletic:
The parties have had some communication since the owners started the lockout Dec. 2, and a small in-person meeting is planned for Thursday to discuss areas outside of core economics. There are more than 30 subjects in collective bargaining, and not all of them are as contentious as matters like the competitive balance tax or how many years it takes players to get to arbitration.
Even with major talking points not being on the docket, MLB and the union getting together is reason for a small sliver of optimism. Albeit, it likely is at least two more weeks before negotiations advance to a more serious stage.
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has said there is an awareness of avoiding lost games in Spring Training or the 2022 regular season, but he also reasoned a lockout was necessary.
What can be done during MLB lockout?
While trades and signings involving Major League players is prohibited during the lockout, teams can strike deals with Minor Leaguers, make front office changes and to their coaching staff.
For the Dodgers, it could provide an ample opportunity to work on a new contract extension for manager Dave Roberts, which president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman has suggested was only a matter of time before being agreed to.
Have you subscribed to the Dodger Blue YouTube channel? Be sure to ring the notification bell to watch player interviews, participate in shows and giveaways, and stay up to date on all Dodgers news and rumors!