Rob Manfred Says Shortening MLB Season Would Equal Less Pay for Players

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistApril 21, 2018

FILE - In this Feb. 1, 2018 file photo Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred speaks during a news conference at the baseball owners meetings in the Four Seasons Hotel in Los Angeles. Rebuilding _ or, to use the less euphemistic term, tanking _ has become one of baseball’s most polarizing topics in 2018. Manfred has said
Mark J. Terrill/Associated Press

If Major League Baseball were to shorten its regular season, Commissioner Rob Manfred believes it should result in less pay for players. 

Speaking to the Associated Press Sports Editors, Manfred noted players would be working less, and their pay should directly reflect that.

"I think that Anthony [Rizzo]'s comments were realistic in the sense that he linked the fact that if, in fact, you're going to go to 154 games or some lower number of games, that players would have to be participants in that process," Manfred said, via ESPN's Jesse Rogers. "They're going to work less, they're probably going to make less."

During an appearance on Chicago's ESPN 1000 this week, Rizzo noted he would like to see the MLB season shortened. 

"I think we play too much baseball," Rizzo said. "Yes, guys are going to take pay cuts. But are we playing this game for the money or do we love this game? I know it's both, but in the long run it will make everything better."

Per the New York Daily News, Manfred noted there have been internal discussions about shortening the season to either 158 or 154 games, but some teams have argued they would stand to lose millions of dollars in revenue in those scenarios. 

Last year, per USA Todaythe average MLB salary was a record $4.47 million, but the 1.6 percent increase from 2016 was the lowest since salaries dropped from 2003 ($2.5 million) to 2004 ($2.4 million). 

MLB adopted its current 162-game schedule for both leagues during the 1962 season.

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