The Phillies are at least two years into an era in which they should be rebuilding but apparently don’t feel the need to do so: the 2014 non-waiver trade deadline has passed and they made no deals. Not a one.
This despite having numerous pieces that other teams could probably use. Maybe Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels were pipe dream deals — Hamels is sticking around and should and Lee is more of a waiver deal guy — but Marlon Byrd, Antonio Bastardo and A.J. Burnett were all marketable. No, they may not have gotten a huge return, but they are not part of the future so moving them, even in minor deals, would’ve made sense. Ruben Amaro didn’t think so.
OK, he thought so. He just didn’t like the offers he was getting:
Well, OK. But if the rest of baseball doesn’t value what you have the way you do, maybe you’re the one overstating the value of what you have? Wouldn’t be the first time Amaro has done this.
Anyway, like they say: if it ain’t broke, oh, wait. Never mind.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Major League Baseball Players Association has submitted a proposal to the league concerning the 2020 season. The proposal includes a 114-game season with an end date on October 31, playoff expansion for two years, the right for players to opt out of the season, and a potential deferral of 2020 salaries if the postseason were to be canceled.
Passan clarifies that among the players who choose to opt out, only those that are considered “high risk” would still receive their salaries. The others would simply receive service time. The union also proposed that the players receive a non-refundable $100 million sum advance during what would essentially be Spring Training 2.
If the regular season were to begin in early July, as has often been mentioned as the target, that would give the league four months to cram in 114 games. There would have to be occasional double-headers, or the players would have to be okay with few off-days. Nothing has been mentioned about division realignment or a geographically-oriented schedule, but those could potentially ease some of the burden.
Last week, the owners made their proposal to the union, suggesting a “sliding scale” salary structure. The union did not like that suggestion. Players were very vocal about it, including on social media as Max Scherzer — one of eight players on the union’s executive subcommittee — made a public statement. The owners will soon respond to the union’s proposal. They almost certainly won’t be happy with many of the details, but the two sides can perhaps find a starting point and bridge the gap. As the calendar turns to June, time is running out for the two sides to hammer out an agreement on what a 2020 season will look like.