St. Louis Cardinals: Optimism, negotiations, and a big week for baseball

The MLB is proposing its economic proposal to the MLBPA on Tuesday and in the coming days, the fate of the 2020 St. Louis Cardinals’ season could be decided.

In the previous couple of weeks, hope for the St. Louis Cardinals’ 2020 season seemed to be dwindling. We heard the talk of war from the MLBPA over anything but prorated salaries for 2020; we heard the crying of those poor billionaire owners and how 2020 is just going to be so awful the players have to help shoulder losses. It was a lot of public posturing and bickering, none of which inspired confidence.

Throughout it all though, one underlying fact remains. Players and owners both stand to lose much more if they can’t come to an agreement (both in 2020 and beyond) than if they compromise.

Mom and Dad may be in a big fight, but neither of them wants a divorce.

Over the weekend, we got some more news that is encouraging for the coming week. Coming from a MONSTER piece from Jeff Passan of ESPN, there may be more hope than originally thought. This 4,500-word article goes through 20 questions that Passan has and attempts to answer about where the negotiations are between the two sides.

To start, the two made a good choice and debated a 60-plus page health and safety report/guideline to first find some common ground. While progress has been made there, the economics of a 2020 season have always been the sticking point.

If you don’t know how the relationship has been (historically) between the owners and the MLBPA, Passan writes directly that if an agreement isn’t made, it will be from an “erosion of trust in recent years among the leaders on both sides poisoned and polluted the landscape to an extent that a deal never was going to happen in the first place.”

Fun!

The next important line, ‘”Everything,” one high-ranking official involved in the discussions said, “is going to happen next week.”‘

This week is going to be huge as when the world stops celebrating Memorial Day in that crowded pool at Lake of the Ozarks, the owners are going to be submitting a revised economic plan to the players.

The previous 50-50 revenue sharing idea was not met with open arms, and a revised deal, such as promising prorated salaries, just paid in future years, might work better.

Passan touches on the very murky situation that any 2020 deal will create in 2021, but for now, I am going to stay out of that. The present is what matters now.

Jon Heyman also noted some more optimism for a deal this weekend.

Sorry for the Tweet barf, but Heyman lays out some encouraging stuff.

If the 2020 season is canceled because the players and owners can’t come to an agreement on player compensation, the sport will look horrible publicly.

I am on the players’ side of all of this money talk, but it will be hard to hear that a deal couldn’t be made and especially if the other sports leagues come back this summer.

The Passan article goes on to discuss more of the intricacies of what a deal would need to look like and other implications, but the immediate future of the negotiations is very exciting.

These negotiations would normally be played out over a very long period of time but the MLB doesn’t have that time. This deal needs to be made in the next two weeks. For a season to start by July 4, the second spring training needs to begin around the beginning of the second week of June.

Much later than that, an 82-game season turns into a shorter season with less allure and less glamor.

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News should be coming out about what specifically this economic plan for 2020 could be, but one thing is for sure: this week is going to be HUGE for the MLB season’s chances for coming back in 2020.

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