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Rob Manfred expected to announce a delay for Spring Training Thursday (UPDATED)

The first domino for a delayed season will reportedly fall Thursday

2021 Gatorade All-Star Workout Day Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images

MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred is expected to address the media Thursday on the final day of the Owners Meetings in Orlando. Manfred is likely to update the status of the ongoing labor negotiations with the MLBPA, but is also expected to announce that spring training will be delayed per a report by the New York Daily News’ Deesha Thosar.

Commissioner Rob Manfred is scheduled to address the media on Thursday and is expected to deliver the biggest blow yet of the MLB lockout.

In that address, which will take place on the final day of the Owners Meetings in Orlando, Manfred is expected to deliver the news that spring training will be delayed. If he does make that announcement, it will be the first real indication that a March 31 Opening Day is not just a longshot, but improbable.

It has been two weeks since both sides sat down at the table. The league rejected the latest proposal from the players and then opted not to counter. They instead requested the help of a federal mediator which was promptly rejected by the Players Association.

Manfred will no doubt attempt to cast blame on the players for the ongoing situation and the delay of spring training. However, the league has yet to show indication that they are willing to take park in any meaningful negotiation.

It has been clear for weeks that the start of the spring would be pushed back. Up next will be the cancellation of the start of the Grapefruit and Cactus League seasons. Then Opening Day will be in the crosshairs.

UPDATE: Major League Baseball and the MLBPA will meet again Saturday.

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