It may not be the last gasp, but the baseball season will be a lot more difficult to conduct, should the owners and players not be able to get together on a deal, which now may have a concession of sorts from the Players Association. But it may not be the kind of concession the owners are looking for, frankly.
To this point, the deadlock existed because the players were expecting to get prorated salaries, while the owners insisted that they had to come with a revenue-sharing situation, since the possibility of going the entire season without fans was a probability.
But the players are reportedly willing to defer some of the value of those prorated salaries to future seasons, so long as they don’t have to submit to what they feel amounts to a salary cap.
The owners have ideas about a sliding pay scale, apparently, as a way to go forward to their satisfaction.
If the season CAN’T happen, who will the public, and BetAnySports customers, hold more accountable?
We’re not sure that bettors will consider who is right and who is wrong. They just want to wager on something. So maybe they’ll lay the blame at the feet of the side that turned down a compromise?
One can’t be sure of that. But perception has a way of turning into reality. And in a scenario like this, where so many people have been out of work because of the virus-related shutdowns, it’s likely that members of the general public won’t be overly sympathetic toward those who have an opportunity to go back to work but “want more and more money” to do it.
Sure, the word “greed” will be brought up.
And even though it is conceivable that you could tag the owners with that word, the players are not going to win this battle for hearts and minds.
That’s because there are only 30 owners, and they can very easily have a unified voice. Meanwhile, the players have a union that isn’t, well, necessarily like other unions. After all, there is a tremendous disparity in income between the highest and lowest paid performers. And so the interests among these players could differ as well.
There are, for instance, a lot of players in a position of vulnerability if they are not getting a paycheck. That will especially be the case if they are near the bottom rung on the salary scale. When games are not played, these guys are not getting paid. And some of them had made certain financial obligations before the COVID-19 scare that put them in a bind. So you may wind up having a split, and then trouble if things get out into the press.
Even high-salaried players can feel the pressure.
Take Noah Syndergaard of the New York Met, for example. As some BetAnySports patrons know, he had Tommy John surgery, so he is done for the season. But he also signed for a lease on a penthouse apartment in the Tribeca neighborhood of Manhattan. The rent? A cool $27,000 per month.
Syndergaard hasn’t paid any rent on it, and he is now being sued by the landlord for the full amount, which totals $250,000. His rationale is that because of the pandemic, he isn’t going to use the place anyway (he is rehabbing in Florida), so he figured that a payment of $50,000 would be enough to let him walk away from it.
Obviously that didn’t meet with approval from the landlord. And according to a New York Post, the right-hander they call “Thor” reacted angrily to one Twitter user who actually made a great point – “Yeah the guy is a monster for wanting you to live up to a lease agreement signed by both of you. How would you react if the team suddenly said yeah nah to your contract?”
Haha – yes, especially now that he isn’t going to be of any use to the Mets this season. But he points out that since, in his view, the owners went back on their pledge to pay prorated salaries, he can apply the same standard. Then he told the Tweeter (is that the word?) to “Just shut up.”
Whether players have had a legitimate beef or not, incidents like the one with Syndergaard or quotes like “I gotta get my money. I’m not playing unless I get mine, OK?” from Tampa Bay’s Blake Snell are what fans retain in their consciousness. So I have a funny feeling they will always come up short if it came down to a PR battle.
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