Podcast: Latest CBA Negotiations and Early ZiPS Projected Standings

While a foot of snow falls on Chicago, Josh and Jim chat about the latest contentious CBA negotiations. Are they sweating a delayed start of Spring Training? Are they worried that a lack of progress will push back opening Day? They share their optimistic and pessimistic viewpoints.

Meanwhile, FanGraphs has released their early ZiPS projected standings, and things look for the Chicago White Sox within the AL Central. But what about the entire American League? Once the lockout is ended, how could these projected standings change?

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This is surely due to my ignorance about the process but my question is: why did owners lockout the players?

As it’s usually portrayed, anyway, the previous CBA was too owner-friendly. If that’s the case, why wouldn’t the owners be content to continue with the previous CBA? Why not make the players make the call to strike? If nothing else, that seems like the wiser negotiation tactic. But maybe I’m missing something here.

Jim Margalus

My understanding is that they didn’t want to chance heading into the season with no deal in place, thus leaving open the option for players to strike like they did in ’94, so the lockout was initially presented as a way to skip several fruitless steps and get down to brass tacks.

Which could’ve held up as true if they actually engaged with the MLBPA afterward, rather than waiting a month and a half before an unserious proposal. So now it seems like it still takes the strike off the table, but also allows them to attempt pressuring players with lost games/paychecks sooner.


I’m sure there are real, even legal, differences between a lockout and a strike, and maybe that’s what I’m missing. But heading into the season with no deal in place seems like a win for the owners. If the players strike, that’s of course bad for the owners, but is it worse than extending the lockout into the season?

I guess what’s got me confused is this: for games to be canceled, one side has basically has to say, “we’re not playing games until we get a new deal.” But if the old deal is so owner-friendly, it seems like players, not the owners, should be the ones taking that stand.


The players are better off with an extended CBA, with the ability to strike any time, than a lockout. A lockout is zero income to the players, many of whom have not prepared for a long period of no income. If 2022 is played as an extension to the expired CBA, then players get paid until they decide they have enough income to get by until 2023 (easier to plan for), then strike, cutting the owners out of the most profitable portion of the season.


Ah, yes, this does make some sense. So the lockout is a way to stay in control and, hopefully, keep the losses contained.


Was there something about the Luxury tax expiring or was that a dream?

Right Size Wrong Shape

Does it come with a pocket protector?


Aren’t they called “sweaters”, not “jerseys”?