Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association have spent the winter negotiating over rules changes while publicly bickering over the operation of the player market. The sides now appear to be nearing agreement on a package of new rules, per Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic (Twitter link), though it’s not likely to address the broader concerns.
According to Rosenthal, a new deal may only be a day or two away from completion. It’s not clear just what’ll be covered by the pact, though we’ve known of the areas under consideration for the past week or so. From a hot stove perspective, the application of a single trade deadline and roster size modifications (26-man roster with two extra openings in September) appear to be the most important possible tweaks under contemplation.
There are some much more consequential possibilities that the union would also like to discuss, given its frustrations with the transactional landscape. Those conversations would occur during the season to come, per Rosenthal’s prior reporting, with at least some possibility of a CBA renegotiation and extension.
Meanwhile, the league has announced a new deal with the Liga Mexicana de Beisbol. The MLBPA has ratified the pact, which will govern the movement of players from Mexico’s top league to MLB organizations.
Players who have deals with LMB clubs will be free to go to the majors without compensation once they reach 25 years of age and have accumulated six seasons of professional ball. To acquire a LMB player who hasn’t yet reached that status, MLB teams will need to work out a contract with the player and convince his former team to accept a release fee — 15% of guaranteed MLB money or 35% of a signing bonus on a minors deal — to cede its control over the player’s services.