What we all-but knew would happen was made official early Thursday morning, as ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that MLB owners had imposed a lockout on the players.
Major League Baseball has officially implemented a lockout, sources tell ESPN. The ninth work stoppage in the sport’s history has begun.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) December 2, 2021
This is the first work stoppage of the new millennium, with the last one occurring 26 years ago. The lockout has no hard-and-fast deadline to end, but many pundits view it as unlikely to extend much beyond February, since that would begin to eat into spring training and potentially the regular season, which would hurt the pockets of both sides.
Transactions will be frozen during the lockout and players and agents will not be able to interact with team officials in an official capacity, whether that be for contract negotiations, coaching, or injury rehabilitation.
We’ll keep you updated on whatever reports come out on the CBA negotiations that will need to be completed to resume baseball activity in MLB. Hopefully this ends with enough time to complete the free agency period and begin the season on time, but with as antagonistic and petty as the relationship has been between the two sides of late, nothing is a guarantee.