Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reports that owners, frustrated by the pace of negotiations, could vote to lock out the players if they can’t come up with a new collective bargaining agreement by December 1. It could be the first work stoppage since April 2, 1995.
According to Rosenthal, the owners offered to eliminate direct draft pick compensation — a reason why players like Dexter Fowler and Ian Desmond had to wait until late February before signing prior to this past season — in exchange for an international draft. The players rejected the proposal, understandably.
The owners and the union are also at odds over the competitive balance tax and the Joint Drug Agreement, Rosenthal adds.
The last work stoppage, 21 years ago, lasted 232 days and canceled 948 games. Major League Baseball suffered a lack of interest after play resumed and many believe that the steroids-fueled home run race between Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa reinvigorated interest in the sport.