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The owners are meeting, the owners are meeting!

Jan 12, 2011, 9:53 AM EDT

Selig hands up

The most important part of all of this is that Bud Selig and the owners are meeting in some posh resort just outside of Phoenix while most of you are up to your neck in snow. They just don’t care about us fans, do they? Shame. Shame, I say.

Oh, they’re doin’ other stuff too:

MLB owners will begin their two-day quarterly owners meeting today in Paradise Valley, Ariz., with preparation for the upcoming CBA negotiations with the MLBPA again at the top of the agenda. No significant formal action items from the owners are expected, but much like owners meetings throughout ’10, discussion toward the upcoming labor talks will be paramount. The current five-year accord expires after the ’11 season.

For those of you who are growing increasingly disillusioned with what’s going on with the NFL labor talks, know that there is very, very little chance of a work stoppage in baseball.  A deal will be done and it will be pretty painless, mostly because neither the players nor the owners want anything that is anathema to the other.

Yes, we’ve heard that the owners want a slotted drafting system (i.e. where picks gets a set bonus based on where they are selected), and yes, union head Michael Weiner has referred to that as “a salary cap,” and the MLBPA absolutely hates salary caps, so there will likely be some back and forth on that.  But at the end of the day, union members have never really had a problem throwing non-members under the bus, and I suspect they’ll do so in this instance, even if the union leadership is philosophically opposed to it.  Same with the international draft if that becomes a part of collective bargaining.

I think both of those things are bad ideas, but the players aren’t going to risk a work stoppage to fight for them. Instead, they’ll simply extract some concessions from the owners to make them happen. Perhaps the removal of draft pick compensation or at least a revamping of it.  Probably a substantial raise in the minimum salary, which will assuage players’ guilt over caving in on slotting.  Some other things.

Basically, though, the owners and the players have realized that sixteen years of labor peace has been outrageously good for their bottom line.  No one is going to the mattresses over anything in play this time around.

  1. Old Gator - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:02 AM

    Matttress? Aw, it’s one thing to say that the union and the owners are getting along, but itsn’t it an awful lot to expect them all to come out at the same time?

    • sportsdrenched - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:13 AM

      I beleive this is a Godfather allusion. “going to the mattresses” means the Families were getting ready to start whacking each other. So the Goombah’s slept on mattresses at un-disclosed locations so Law Enforcement, and the other Goombah’s would have a hard time finding them.

      • Old Gator - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:15 AM

        “Whacking”? Um…are we going around in circles here?

      • yankeesfanlen - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:18 AM

        Players don’t know how to play the piano or cook spaghetti for twenty any more anyway.

      • BC - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:33 AM

        Leave the gun. Grab the cannoli.

    • CJ - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:15 AM

      I know his use of “mattress” and “play” in the same sentence might’ve stunted your memory, but I’m sure you’ve seen the Godfather, no?

      • umrguy42 - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:58 AM

        …or even You’ve Got Mail, which references (and explains) the line.

        (What? I can’t enjoy a few Meg Ryan rom-coms? :p)

      • BC - Jan 12, 2011 at 11:51 AM

        umrguy42 – Meg was good in her day but she can’t hold a candle to my Drew B.

      • Old Gator - Jan 12, 2011 at 11:09 PM

        You mean Drew doesn’t get off on hot wax dripped on her bellybutton? Boy, she must be a barren source of amusement.

  2. paperlions - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:09 AM

    When I read the title of this post, I immediately thought “is there an early bird special at Denny’s?”

  3. sknut - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:16 AM

    I have no problem with the draft as it is, I mean if your the Pirates and your payroll is around 40 million that should mean you could afford to pay a little over slot to get better talent. Its not like the NFL where you are paying someone 50 million and are hoping they don’t fail. Who would ever thought that MLB would be the leader in labor relations, with the NFL and NBA about to be locked out Fehr leading the NHLPA, MLB looks golden.

  4. BC - Jan 12, 2011 at 10:35 AM

    Should have had these guys meet in Hartford. With 235763252 inches of snow on the ground, they’d be locked in for 2 days and maybe actually get something PRODUCTIVE done! Other than the rounds of golf they no doubt have scheduled for this afternoon. But hey, there’s always Wii (not Michelle, the video game thing).

  5. Chris Fiorentino - Jan 12, 2011 at 11:13 AM

    I agree that the draft pick compensation system needs to be revamped. The better you do the more money you are going to make….oh no, wait a second…you did a little TOO good, so now you just cut out about 12-15 teams because they don’t want to give up a first round pick to get you. Sorry. That’s just ridiculous.

    • WhenMattStairsIsKing - Jan 12, 2011 at 2:23 PM

      I think this issue is definitely heaviest with middle relief pitchers.

  6. hep3 - Jan 12, 2011 at 11:50 AM

    The owners are meeting? YAWN.

  7. apbaguy - Jan 12, 2011 at 11:50 AM

    Most of the CBA stuff is around the margins this year. The basic framework-free agency-is working pretty well. Big stars get big money, mid-tier guys get very nice paychecks-and kids get to prove themselves for 3 years before arbitration. Those of us that live with bad owners-you know who you are-can be grateful that the majority of owners currently are in no mood to do anything stupid. That can change, of course, they’re owners, after all. Greed got them where they are. But maybe Selig’s legacy is this: eventually, he realized that labor peace is good.

  8. Old Gator - Jan 12, 2011 at 11:18 PM

    This is great – Bud Light looks just like Evita Peron in that photo:

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