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Union chief seems cautiously optimistic about MLB labor peace

Posted by: Sam Borden - Posted in Misc on Feb 26, 2011 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

Each year the players’ union sends its officials on a tour of all 30 big league camps and this morning was the Steinbrenner Field stop. After meeting with the Yankees for about two hours, union head Michael Weiner talked with reporters in the hallway outside the home clubhouse.

My impression is that for the average fan, the machinations of the union/owners relationship isn’t exactly riveting. And if the current NFL situation is any barometer, the only thing most fans care about is whether the games will be played or not.

Along those lines, Weiner said he was optimistic about reaching a new agreement with management before the CBA expires at the end of this year, but was quick to add he is ready for anything. “Just this week I’ve seen a general manager talking about a salary cap and I’ve seen a national baseball writer talking about rumblings of contraction,” he said. “Are we optimistic in a sense? Yes. But do we take anything for granted? Absolutely not.”

To me, the best indicator that there won’t be a real threat of a work stoppage for baseball is that there isn’t a real hot-button issue between the sides this time. In 1994, the salary cap was out front; in 2001-02, it was all about drug testing. This time, “it doesn’t appear that anyone is trying to re-invent the wheel,” Weiner said.

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17 Responses to “Union chief seems cautiously optimistic about MLB labor peace”

  1. Ruby Friday February 26th, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Celtics rule———————Knicks kneel in awe.

  2. Abe Peterham February 26th, 2011 at 11:51 am

    Football I can live without cause strike, baseball … Not so much…

  3. m February 26th, 2011 at 11:59 am

    “Mr. Weiner. Just a follow-up question. Mr. Ortiz said he would get back to his with his findings re: his name on the list. Any word on that?”

  4. Irreverent Discourse February 26th, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    I vote contraction. :)

    Remove Marlins, Pirates, A’s, Blue Jays, Royals
    Move Tampa Bay to Orlando
    Move Colorado or Arizona to AL West

    AL East – NY, Boston, Baltimore, Orlando
    AL Central – Detroit, Minnesota, Kansas City, Chicago
    AL West – Texas, LA, Seattle,
    NL East – NY, Philly, Washington, Atlanta
    NL Central – St Louis, Chicago, Cincinnati, Milwaukee, Houston
    NL West – LA, SD, SF, Arizona

    Tadaaa… balanced schedules are now certainly possible, and the overall talent pool is better. Happy days.

  5. Irreverent Discourse February 26th, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    Obviously Cleveland would be in the AL Central, not the now defunct Royals… :)

  6. Joe from Long Island February 26th, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    It’s an $8B a year industry. There’s not going to be any serious trouble.

    Only a complete idiot would throw a wrench into this business.

  7. pat February 26th, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    SamBorden For those wondering about the “second team” coming in for Yankees today: C Romine, 1b: Vazquez 2b: Russo, SS: Nunez 3B: Laird, LF: Curtis ..

    SamBorden More Yankees “second team”: CF Golson, RF Maxwell, DH Jones

  8. GreenBeret7 February 26th, 2011 at 12:24 pm

    What gives you the idea that the union is going to give up 125 active roster spots and 75 more 40 man roster spots?

  9. GreenBeret7 February 26th, 2011 at 12:37 pm

    ST Yankee Magazine Show on YES….highlites…. Dellin Betances

  10. Patrick February 26th, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    Baseball is strong right now, I see expansion within the next 5-10 years, not contraction.

  11. Patrick February 26th, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    MLB should expand to 32 teams and go with 2 divisions in each league. 4 division winners and 4 wild cards

  12. GreenBeret7 February 26th, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    As far as the issues coming up for the new CBA will be the arbitration process.

  13. Triple Short of a Cycle February 26th, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    Irreverent Discourse,

    What happened to the Indians. I would much rather see them go then Toronto

  14. GreenBeret7 February 26th, 2011 at 12:43 pm

    There’s not enough MLB quality talent with 30 teams or cities/owners that can support more teams. There won’t be any expansion. Travel distances are already a problem.

  15. jacksquat February 26th, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    The owners are making too much money as it is to go to the mat for a salary cap.

  16. 86w183 February 26th, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    I’d love to see 28 teams with 7 in each of two divisions in each league.

    The only way the MLBPA would ever bite the bullet on that would be expansion to a 45 man roster and 28 man active to make up for all the lost jobs (and then some).

    the most obvious choice for contraction would be Tampa Bay with either Cleveland, Kansas city or Pittsburgh next on my list.

    But it aint happening

  17. tomingeorgia February 26th, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    A few years ago, I drove the early morning shift for a limousine company in NJ. Mike Weiner rode with me two or three times a month for a while. He was the chief lawyer for the MLBPA at the time, and we had several amazing conversations on the 1-1/2 ride to Newark airport at 5:00 AM. He’s extremely intelligent, obviously, dedicated to the players entirely, but he’s a real baseball fan, too. He’s no Fehr. If it can be done, he’ll do his best to avoid labor action.

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