News! There’s lockout news! It’s not much, but it’s also not nothing: Evan Drellich of The Athletic reported that “a small in-person meeting” Thursday allowed owners and players to discuss “areas outside of core economics.” So far as anyone can tell this marks the first time that there’s been any direct, formal negotiating since the onset of the lockout. That’s the good news, for anyone hoping for an on-time baseball season in 2022. Here’s the less-good news: According to Drellich’s sources, the sides are unlikely to broach what are considered “core economics”—essentially the meaty disagreements at the heart of the present impasse—until some point in January, at the earliest.
As things stand, the last concrete proposal was made by the Players Association, back in late November. As the union tells it, owners did not offer a counterproposal; instead, they indicated that their willingness to do so was contingent on the players agreeing “to drop a number of key demands” up front. Those key demands make up the core economics that the parties have no concrete plans to discuss. Players say they’re prepared to resume negotiating just as soon as owners bring forth the next counterproposal. Commissioner Rob Manfred seems to hold the position that the owners’ last communication—please get rid of all those things in your proposal which we don’t like and then we will simply proceed to signing—constitutes an adequate counterproposal, one which “would have provided a pretty clear path to make an agreement.”
In the meantime, the work of remembering baseball faces continues. Our Day 13 collection of faces was high on character but low on guys who I had ever heard of before. Kyle Lobstein? Gabe Klobosits? Sean Guenther? Not real! This week’s collection is full of expressive faces, flowing locks, and current and former Oakland Athletics. I recognize eight of these baseball men: two Nationals, four Mets, one Yankee, and one Blue Jay. How many do you recognize? Pathetically few. It’s a disgrace, really.
The key to Day 13’s collection from earlier in the week is below. Please never forget to remember the guys.