Deadline approaching on MLB collective bargaining pact

Deadline approaching on MLB collective bargaining pact
By Reuters

30/11/2016 at 22:50

The midnight deadline to reach a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) was fast approaching on Wednesday as Major League Baseball and the Players' Association tried to avert the sport's first labor glitch in two decades.

While there did not appear to be one major issue blocking an agreement, there were numerous proposed changes from both sides that have bogged down negotiations in Irving, Texas.

Changes being considered included the luxury-tax threshold, draft pick compensation over the signing of free agents, a proposed international draft, roster sizes and pace-of-play initiatives.

Failing to reach agreement on a new CBA could lead owners to declare a lockout that would put trades and signings on hold, scuttle next week's Winter Meetings and interrupt player benefits.

If agreement was thought to be close, the sides could also opt to extend the existing agreement until the last details were worked out.

A labor action would be the first since the players' strike of 1994 that wiped out the end of the season and the entire postseason including the World Series and delayed the start of the 1995 campaign.

Baseball has had 21 years of labor peace since the strike which helped spawn a period of dramatic growth with revenues soaring from $1.2 billion in 1995 to almost $10 billion in 2016, with the average annual salary of players soaring from $1 million to $4.4 million.

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