Smooth Operators: Recent Collective Bargaining in Major League Baseball, pp. 176-208

Daniel A. Rascher
Timothy D. DeSchriver

In late 2011, at a time when other leagues such as the National Football League and the National Basketball Association had engaged in work stoppages, Major League Baseball owners and the MLB Players Association harmoniously agreed on a new five-year collective bargaining agreement. This article focuses on the reasons why MLB as an industry has maintained labor peace after decades of work stoppages. The primary aspects of the new MLB CBA, such as changes to the revenue sharing system, competitive balance tax, salary arbitration, and the amateur draft are addressed. The manner in which these economic mechanisms affect areas such as competitive balance will be analyzed. Lastly, a comparison was undertaken of the collective bargaining environment in MLB versus other professional sports leagues and other non-sports industries.