Everybody. But the two faces of the talks that could and should have led to a longer season are Manfred and Clark. They failed to keep discussions from being about how to make the most out of 2020, and let them lapse into CBA-like rhetoric, filled with low blows, media leaks and most importantly, a lot of wasted time. If both sides were serious about making real progress together, they would make sure both of these leaders were replaced when it's time to negotiate the next CBA.
The result of the grievance will be decided by what baseball parties did or did not do, not what other leagues did or didn't do. The players seem convinced enough that they can make a case owners negotiated in bad faith that they walked away from some of the things they wanted to protect their right to pursue a grievance. I think we are passed the point of cooler heads prevailing. The time for that was before or during three months of ugly fighting while a country had no tolerance for it. It will settle down now, because the grievance process will run on a separate track from the season, but I fully expect the bad blood to reach the same boil once it's time to negotiate -- or not negotiation -- again down the line.
Season start of July 24-27 range is the expectation. I would imagine there will be a schedule out this week. It will consist of only NL and AL Central teams for the Cards. I have not heard if they will have a shotgun start against the Cubs. That would be great.
No specifics on that lately. It's on the timeline. Initially thought it would be before the team name/color announcement. Now not so sure.
More than the shortened season and the taxi squad, I think the absence of a minor league season will give them the most reason to throw some young guys in to the fire from time to time -- if there is a need at the position. Sixty games is not time for development in the majors, but if there's a pitcher (Zack Thompson maybe) who can contribute, why not?
NL Central teams will play only NL Central and AL Central teams, in order to attempt to limit travel as much as possible.
Great question. No immediate answers. Those that don't make the taxi squad will suffer from a lost year, it looks like.
I think they have a better outlook for their grievance process than a lot of outsiders do.
If the league has decided what it's breaking point is regarding pushing forward and calling the whole thing off in regard to the impact the virus has on the season, it has not made that known. A smattering of positive cases is not going to shut things down. We know that because it's already happened. Just this week certain spring training sites had multiple players test positive and had to be shut down temporarily, but not permanently. Goal number one will be to keep the virus out. Goal number two will be catch those who get it as early as possible and get them away from the group. If goal number one and two work well enough, the season and postseason work with the necessary parties cycling out as needed. That's a rather blunt way of looking at it, but it's exactly how this appears to be shaping up. If enough players have the virus at the same time that they can't compete, I don't know what happens. If a player or multiple players get severely ill because of the virus, that could change the conversation. But most players -- not all, but most -- should be in a low-risk range for super serious health problems due to the virus, and those that are OK with the risk are going to give it a shot. Important to remember too that not everyone required for these games is a young athlete in great physical health. There are older managers, coaches, front office members, etc. So, yes, there are many ways this could be derailed.
I don't think the length of the season has much to do with it. Those contracts are not desirable for another team to take on now. They will be less desirable now that teams are feeling a financial pinch. The play of Carpenter and Fowler could change that outlook, but that would the case regardless of season length. In order to "dump" a contract, there has to be a team that wants to be, well, dumped upon.
I get it. But at least they didn't wind up with a canceled season. There is that. The games will try to draw you back in. If they don't, baseball screwed up.