MLBPA Reportedly Files Grievance Against MLB for $500 Million in Damages

Adam WellsMay 13, 2021

PHILADELPHIA, PA - MAY 01:  A generalview of the MLB logo atop the dugout prior to the Major League Baseball game between the Philadelphia Phillies and the New York Mets on May 1, 2021 at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, PA.  (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Major League Baseball Players Association has reportedly filed a grievance against MLB stemming from the pandemic-shortened 2020 season. 

Per Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the MLBPA is seeking an estimated $500 million in damages from the league for not acting "in good faith last year to play as many games as possible" when the two sides were negotiating a deal. 

Sherman noted that MLB has filed a counter-grievance against the union.

MLB and the union engaged in a prolonged standoff last year before commissioner Rob Manfred imposed a 60-game regular-season schedule. 

The MLBPA initially proposed a 114-game season with salary deferrals if the postseason had to be canceled, opt-outs and $100 million to the players at the start of the new spring training. 

MLB rejected that deal and later countered with a 76-game season with 75-percent prorated salaries, playoff pool money and no draft pick compensation for teams if a player signs elsewhere as a free agent. 

The union responded by turning down the offer, while proposing an 89-game season with full prorated salaries. 

Per Ronald Blum of the Associated Press, team owners claimed they would lose $640,000 per game in an 82-game season with no fans in the stands. 

MLBPA expressed doubt about the league's claim in a memo to the players. 

In the final offer from the league, a 72-game season was proposed with players receiving 70 percent prorated salaries for the regular season and 80 percent for the postseason. 

When no deal was reached, owners unanimously voted to give Manfred the power to impose a season.

Those negotiations came after the two sides agreed to a deal in March in which players agreed to reduced salaries anticipating a shortened season amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Sherman noted that MLB has asked the union to fast-track the grievance due to the ongoing collective bargaining negotiations. The current CBA is set to expire on Dec. 1. 

If MLB and the MLBPA can't agree to a new CBA before that date, the league will have its first lockout since 1990.