Blue Jays: Baseball is back – Both sides tentatively agree to new CBA
The words that most Blue Jays fans across the country have been waiting for: baseball is back!
Earlier this afternoon, the MLB and MLBPA reached a tentative deal on a new CBA as per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, with just the formalities only being needed to figure out before the deal is formally agreed upon and baseball is officially back in business. Once this new deal is signed off, teams from across the league can once again resume the regular offseason, signing free agents and trading players while also being allowed to adjust 40-man rosters as necessary. Players can also now report to Spring Training once the deal is in effect.
Overall, the deal passed with a 26-12 vote from the MLBPA while 23 of the 30 owners need to ratify the agreement, which is expected to be signed off considering they proposed the latest deal as per MLB Network’s Jon Heyman. The regular season is also slated to begin April 7th and will still be 162 games long, meaning no games will be missed even with the week delay into the regular season.
While the CBA is not officially signed off yet, insiders are reporting that the latest CBA is expected to be signed shortly and that Blue Jays baseball is officially back.
As per TheScore’s Tom Ruminski, there are some pretty substantial changes with this new CBA:
- 12 team playoff format
- Universal designated hitter
- Six-team draft lottery
- Increases to Luxury Tax thresholds as well as an increase on player minimum salaries
Also ncluded in the deal is a 45-day window for the MLB to implement rule changes to the game such as pitch clocks, base size, and the ban on defensive shifts.
Some elements of the new CBA have a pretty big impact on the Blue Jays, as the expanded playoff format does give them better odds at making the postseason considering they are in a stacked AL East division. Increasing the tax thresholds also gives the club some more wiggle room if they are looking to extend Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette while also signing impact players over the next few seasons.
The front office will also be able to add players via free agency or trade once the deal is signed, which is going to be hectic over the next couple of weeks as Spring Training gets underway and big-name players are still on the board like Clayton Kershaw, Carlos Correa, and Freddie Freeman, who the Blue Jays were reportedly interested in prior to the lockout.
Baseball is back. It might have taken almost 100 days and a lot of jarring back and forth, but it is finally back.