February 10, 2019 at 5:30 pm #81678
The players would need a union or some organizing body to represent them. A wildcat strike would draw more attention, but without someone to lead the way, it is hard to see how it would accomplish what is needed.February 16, 2019 at 1:43 pm #81998
I’ve been a union member since grass first turned green, well, seems like it ?
I’ve been a card carrying member since June 1977 of the International Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners. Is still carry a Union Carpenter working card and wear tool bags.
I’ve had a working lifetime to understand how my union operates. My personal opinion of the MLBPA is that of disgust. I struggle to call their organization a union, due to their own actions.
I don’t know the MLBPA’s by laws, but from the outside looking in, they seem selfish and scared.
They have thousands of possible brethren in the minors being grossly underpaid. Is it due to their replacement value that these minor leaguers aren’t being recruited by MLBPA?
Not only does my union have a recruitment fund and working plan, we also have and pay for a training facility our apprentices must attend periodically for 5 yrs, in every major district of every state.
For years I’ve never voiced this opinion, but I have and do see the MLBPA as pathetic compared to a working union.
The MLBPA seems more of a high brow exclusive country club, guarding against adding new members. But, mine is a view from the outside, so I can’t be sure what’s going on inside.February 16, 2019 at 2:06 pm #82000
Great perspective,JJ. That would be quite an editorial!February 16, 2019 at 2:26 pm #82001
Well thanks, but I’ll being ruining the atta boy shortly, with some crazy off the wall ideas for increasing minor leaguers pay. HAR!February 16, 2019 at 3:00 pm #82002
The MLBPA has historically been thought of as the strongest of the four unions representing the major professional sports in this country, although you wouldn’t know it by the most recent CBA. My question is do the other unions represent minor league players of their respective sports? I am asking because I really don’t know. I do know that the NFL, NBA, and NHL don’t have the same minor league structure that MLB has but those sports do have some loosely affiliated minor league teams correct?February 16, 2019 at 3:46 pm #82003
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Tough talk, jj. But it’s really just short-sighted, meaningless bravado. The truth is that the real reason your union still exists in its present form is that the St. Louis construction market has never had a need for non-union workers and contractors. St. Louis hasn’t had the massive increase in population and the accompanying unbridled boom in construction that other markets have had. If it had had that kind of boom, you and your union would have been overrun by non-union people. They’re going to get it built when they want to, and no union is going to stop them if the money is there. Just look at what’s happened in other cities.
That being said I can tell you that I am generally pro-union. Unions provide very important and very valuable services to the people that they serve, to society, and to the industry that they’re part of. First, and most importantly, they allow employers to pay a decent wage, a wage that gives the employees a sense of worth and a sense of dignity. When there is no floor for wages, employers struggle to find other ways to compete, other ways to survive. Often times, finding people who will work for less becomes and option. Second, they provide an avenue for accruing and training competent workers. Third, they allow the employer to provide family healthcare insurance and money for retirement, along with the added benefit that the union manages these accounts.
Regarding labor unrest, I can’t figure out what’s really going on. To me it just looks like change is happening, and with that comes a certain amount of chaos and confusion. I don’t see how somebody can be disappointed because no team wants to pay $400M to a player rather than $100M, or $200M? Are you kidding me? It would be nice if every free agent was signed even though, in most cases, they are already millionaires, if not multi-millionaires. Then, what about the kids in the minors who have their own dreams, their own aspirations? Personally, I don’t care how much money a franchise makes. It would be nice if they would do something good with the money rather than just watch it pile up. But that’s an issue that’s just as complicated as everything else.February 16, 2019 at 3:50 pm #82004
The NFL has zero minor league structure. The NBA union represents the development league and the NHL union does not represent their minor league players.
The NHL’s minor league structure is similar to MLB’s. However, the NBA’s minor league structure is very different.February 16, 2019 at 4:56 pm #82008
You won’t please everyone,and I’m not trying to, yourself included.
I was in Houston Tex, and then Dalls Tex for the booms. The trade unions owned those towns during their booms and non-union recruitment was at a peak.
I consider your opinion on my industry as unimformed.February 16, 2019 at 5:36 pm #82009
GS, I think the question should be, should MLBPA represent the minors players. My answer would be yes.
We know the owners prefer the existing minors salary structure, so the players would have to give a financial concession to get minors players raises in a CBA. And that’s where it ends.February 17, 2019 at 8:50 am #82061
Garrett Broshuis is a lawyer and former player working on minor league player rights. Here he politely calls out Wainwright for not embracing minor leaguers after a bunch of rhetoric about the players needing to stick together.
Key phrase: stick together. Bargaining position of MLBers would be significantly improved if the MiLBers were also unionized.
— Garrett Broshuis (@broshuis) February 17, 2019February 17, 2019 at 9:01 am #82063
I actually knew Garrett for bit when we were in high school. He attended my high school’s rival. Anyway, he’s been working on the minor league salaries for several years now and he’s right to call Wainwright out. Waino mentioned several times about how underpaid minor league players were but then didn’t address any comments mentioning the need to unionize the minors.February 17, 2019 at 9:13 am #82064
Right. For those who do not know, Wainwright went on Twitter last night in what appeared to be an attempt to back off from his strike comments the day before which drew national attention. After his multi-part pre-prepared tweets, he took some questions/heat from fans.
In my opinion, he said absolutely nothing of merit, and as BHC noted, totally dodged the minor league salary issue, while asking fans to feel sorry for the hardships the guys who made it had to suffer along the way.
You can read his timeline here.February 17, 2019 at 1:26 pm #82083
I’m all in favor of the MLBPA representing the minors but it seems unlikely anytime soon. It sounds like the players are already gearing up for service time changes and the DH. To add minor league salary increases on top of that would require some major concessions in other areas to appease the owners.February 17, 2019 at 5:11 pm #82105
The players (like Wainwright) and Tony Clark mouth the words that they stand alongside the minor leaguers – as long as it does not cost them anything! Sadly, many people believe the BS.February 17, 2019 at 5:21 pm #82110
Of the three issues: service time, DH, minor league salaries, it appears the minors rank a distant third in their priorities.February 17, 2019 at 6:29 pm #82119
There are many other issues, as well, but minor league salaries is not even on the list!February 18, 2019 at 1:23 am #82135
Seems to me the MLB owners are placing a fool’s bet on a pair of deuces. They have everything to lose no matter how many political cards they play. If the minor leaguers go all in on a union, there is going to be big trouble and likely a complete shutdown of the industry. Why, oh why, risk ‘the game’.
After all the different labor battles, are the owners really prepared to die on the hill of minor league salaries? Seriously!? Their thinking is just flat out absurd. It’s like a cattle rancher feeding his livestock a handful of hay each day in hopes he can sell them as prime beef. I don’t want to eat at their steakhouses.
The owners could set themselves up as heroes right now by increasing the wages voluntarily and avoid any union talk or at the very least a player’s association. Baseball has already been ‘out-sourced’, so that option is not open to them. In fact there is no other option but to load up the howitzer and blow their feet off. How did so many intelligent people get so stupid or is it just arrogance?February 18, 2019 at 5:43 am #82136
From a business standpoint I think the owners are playing it right. There is no real union push in the minor leagues. Never even a vote taken. They would probably only unionize together with the mlbpa and at that point the owners get the union to give up other things in order to get tbings for tbe minor leaguers.February 23, 2019 at 1:40 pm #82622
At least the Pirates owner pays some lip service to the topic of minor league salaries. Actions speak louder than words though.February 23, 2019 at 1:44 pm #82626
Wow. That surprises me. Positively.March 17, 2019 at 2:00 pm #84075March 17, 2019 at 2:12 pm #84076
Non subscription article on the same subjectMarch 18, 2019 at 10:17 am #84100
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Well, since one team took a step forward, hopefully we will see others do the same. I’d like to see the Cards take this and expand it to at least provide a reasonable cushion in the off-season so the players can continue to hone their baseball craft.March 18, 2019 at 11:04 am #84103
I have wondered more about the lack of off season support than the actual salaries themselves. I would think giving guys a stipend to stay in Jupiter all Winter and putting some top notch instructors and fitness gurus there would pay dividends.March 18, 2019 at 11:10 am #84104
I see this either as a PR stunt or the Jays trying to avoid problems with some Canadian law that US teams dont have. You could solve the player salary delimina much more discreetly by simply providing full, nutricious meals to the players in their clubhouse/training facility both at home and on the road. It would essentially give the players extra money without upsetting the salary structure.
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