The negotiations between the players and the MLB do not look easy since everyone casts a wide net.
Debates like that of the special defensive or the dial for pitchers are emerging and this complicates the negotiations. Apparently, players would rather ban over-defense than have a pitch clock.
But the bulk of the file (and we often talk about it) is that of the number of teams in the playoffs. MLB agreed last week to let players have only 12 clubs instead of 14, but the MLBPA is reportedly open to reopening negotiations in order to find more money elsewhere.
I hope it stays at 12. After all, at 14 there are too many bad clubs who will detail, as they say.
Keeping playoffs relatively unreachable has always been important in baseball, as has giving teams that win their division a good edge.
That’s why, in case of series with seven clubs per league, the Players’ Association wants to make sure that the division champions will be rewarded.
We agree that with seven clubs, the champion of each league will not have to play the first series, but that the clubs that finish in second and third place will have to face clubs #6 and #7.
In such a format, the other division champions do not necessarily have a bigger advantage than the club which finished in fourth place and which faces team #5, for example.
That’s why the players have an idea: make 3-of-5, but give a ghost victory to the two clubs having won their division.
What that means is that the series involving the division champions would be 1-0 before it even started.
MLB is not really in agreement with this, but the players are keen on it in the perspective of raising it to 14 clubs in total. Max Scherzer is one of those who wants a ghost victory if it goes up to 14 clubs.
This, in my eyes, is another reason to hope that it remains at 12 teams. 14 clubs, it’s quite complicated.