As we approach the week two mark of the MLB lockout, some around baseball are starting to get a little antsy. Player movement has frozen and the offseason for the sport has come to a standstill. But it’s not even technically mid-December yet. So, in theory, there’s still plenty of time for the league and the union to reach an agreement.
On that note, former Dodgers utility man and current SportsNet LA analyst Jerry Hairston Jr. seemed mixed on the state of negotiations and whether the two sides can reach an agreement in a timely enough manner to not affect the 2022 season.
Fortunately, right now we’re entering mid-December, so it’s really not affecting a whole lot of things and I know fans are not worried right now. If you talk to some players or talk to some owners as well, they’re not worried until we start to reach February — like February 14th-15th, that’s when pitchers and catchers report — and then March. That’s when they start to get it to the table and that’s frustrating for me as a fan … why can’t they get both parties at the table now, resolve the issues and not wait, because you know it’s coming. They’re gonna wait til the last hour to say, ‘you know what, let’s meet and see what happens, see if we can get this thing done.’
It seems like the LA analyst changed how he felt mid-rant, which is honestly understandable. Particularly after witnessing the state of relations back in 2020 while the league was trying to start back up out of the pandemic stoppage.
At any rate, as of now, the biggest event affected by the lockout was the winter meetings, which was set for December 6-9 in Orlando, Florida. Usually, several signings and trades come together while team officials are able to meet face to face and lay the groundwork for moves. With the winter meetings essentially scraped, and no conversations allowed between clubs and players, signings will be behind the eight-ball as the calendar inches closer to spring training.
In all likelihood, spring training schedules will be affected by CBA negotiations. And, at this point, that really feels like a best case scenario. If talks pick back up before the new year, maybe there’s hope for a full and unabridged 2022 calendar year. But there’s nearly zero chance of that happening.