The clock is ticking on Major League Baseball and its player association, the MLBPA, to reach an agreement ahead of Spring Training.
The two sides held a bargaining session Thursday – the first economic-centric meeting in 42 days between the MLB and MLBPA but no deal was reached to end the baseball lockout, according to multiple reports.
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The two sides have met since the lockout went into effect on Dec. 2, but Thursday’s meeting marked the first substantial meeting to discuss the primary economic goals of the MLBPA.
According to Mark Feinsand of MLB.com, the league initiated the meeting and offered a number of concessions including restructuring the draft lottery to disincentivize tanking, eliminating the qualification offer system, expanding to a universal designated hitter and an increased minimum salary for younger players.
The response among players to these conditions was reportedly “not positive” and seen as “disappointing.”
However, most reports indicate this does not come as a surprise to the MLBPA who entered the meeting with low expectations. It is unclear when a counter offer will be made.
The MLBPA is demanding more structural change to areas including free agency and revenue sharing.
The lockout began on Dec. 2 following a seven-minute meeting between the league and the players association. It marks the ninth MLB lockout and the first since the 1994-95 strike that resulted in 938 games and the entire postseason, including the World Series.
MLB Spring Training is set to begin Feb. 26 in Arizona and Florida, with pitchers and catchers expected to report Feb. 14.