Report: Tensions escalate in MLB talks

Tensions are rising as the gap between proposals from Major League Baseball’s owners and players widens, USA Today reported Tuesday afternoon.

Players did not receive a formal counter proposal to their 114-game schedule plan, which was delivered to owners on Sunday. USA Today reported players had heard of the 50-game proposal that is reportedly the preference of owners, but no formal presentation of the outline had reached the players union.

ESPN reported owners were leaning toward a micro season of around 50 games. USA Today reported on Tuesday that owners might want no more than 40 regular-season games.

Rob Manfred
Commissioner Rob Manfred. (Gregory J. Fisher-USA TODAY Sports)

Owners also considered an 82-game schedule with a sliding pay scale that would bring heavier salary reductions for the highest-paid players in baseball. For example, New York Yankees pitcher Gerrit Cole would go from $36 million to somewhere near $8 million for the 2020 season. Los Angeles Angels outfield Mike Trout would be in the same range.

Under the 50-game proposal with prorated salaries, those players would be closer to $11 million, based on figures from USA Today and ESPN.

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred estimated baseball would lose about $4 billion by playing games without fans.

–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)