March 11, 2022

It's a very scary time in the world, and for me, it was made worse by the thought of facing it without the possibility, the mental relief of baseball. After all, baseball is about the promise of spring after a cold dark winter, and we need it now more than ever. When pitchers and catchers didn't report for spring training, it sent me into a funk.

I don't know the details of the negotiations, but I do know that owners of professional sports teams are America's oligarchs and this was a labor-management fight. Well, Major League Baseball’s club owners and the players’ union have finally come to an agreement (unfortunately, one that brings the DH to the National League). There will be a full season, with opening day scheduled for April 7. And as every fan in America always says, "This is our year." Hallelujah! Via NY Times:

The five-year collective bargaining agreement will increase pay for young players and better incentivize teams to compete, among other provisions. Over the last two days, the deal was nearly derailed by a disagreement over creating a draft system for players overseas, but a compromise was struck that will be finalized later.

“Being back on the field is exciting for owners, players, fans as well,” Gerrit Cole, a Yankees star pitcher and a member of a union subcommittee that worked on the deal, said in a phone interview. “I think that’ll be the first step to maybe trying to mend some of the fences with some of the fans that have probably been upset with this process, and rightfully so.”

In a news conference soon after the owners of M.L.B.’s 30 clubs voted to ratify the deal, M.L.B. Commissioner Rob Manfred beamed as he announced the return of the sport. He then tried to strike a more conciliatory tone with players — and fans who watched the labor fight drag out in public and compromise spring training.

Yes, there were legit criticisms:

But mostly, there was joy:

And in the next 48 hours, we get to agonize over who signs who!

PLAY BALL!!!!

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