The 2020 Major League Baseball season remains in serious jeopardy as owners and players try to work out a pay structure, but the players may be open to making one concession that they did not agree to back in March.
MLB is set to present players with a new economic proposal this week, and Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich of The Athletic reported on Monday that the MLB Players Association may be receptive to deferring 2020 salary. The union has remained adamant that players will not accept further decreases in pay, but deferring 2020 salary could help address cash-flow problems owners will have as a result of the postponed — and potentially shortened — season.
Owners may be hesitant to defer payments, however, as that could just push the same problem further down the road. Another potential solution would be extending the season from the current proposal of 82 games, as players would make more in that situation if their salaries were prorated. MLB would prefer a shortened season to increase the chances of having a full postseason. Owners have also said they will lose money for every additional game that is played if games are played without fans.
MLB and the players agreed back in March to a shortened season and prorated salaries, but the league then turned around and said owners will lose too much money playing in empty ballparks. Teams now want players to agree to some sort of pay reduction, and the union has slammed the league over the idea.