MLB Lockout: Locked out players to respond Thursday to clubs’ plan
NEW YORK (AP) — Negotiations aimed at ending the MLB lockout will resume Thursday.
The players’ association notified management Wednesday that it is ready to respond to the offer Major League Baseball made last weekend, proposals that were received coolly by the union.
Baseball’s ninth work stoppage, its first since 1995, enters its 78th day on Thursday, one day after spring training workouts had been scheduled to start.
There is little chance exhibition games will start as scheduled on Feb. 26, and the work stoppage soon will threaten opening day on March 31.
MLB lockout gets real: Spring showcase goes silent
The street next to the San Francisco Giants spring training facility was missing its usual bustle on an unseasonably cool Wednesday morning.
Bartender Sean Ramirez was stacking plates and cleaning glasses before his lunch shift at Los Olivos Mexican Patio, contemplating Major League Baseball’s lockout.
“This is usually our time of year, man,” said Ramirez, a son of the restaurant’s owner who has worked behind the bar for 15 years. “This is the spot, the hangout for Giants fans. We’re usually packed with fans from Sacramento and San Francisco.”
The sounds of spring baseball — from the crack of wooden bats, to music blaring from stadium speakers, to shouted requests from autograph seekers — were muted or completely missing on what was supposed to be the day that pitchers and catchers began workouts in preparation for opening day on March 31.
Instead, it was Day 77 of a lockout that’s become the second-longest work stoppage in baseball history. Many minor leaguers are reporting to camp in Arizona and Florida on dates that vary by team, but the 40-man roster players won’t be on the field until MLB and the players’ association reach a compromise.
“I’m very sad because there’s nobody here, and we’re going to have a short spring training,” said 59-year-old Johnny Rivero, a Yankees fan who was hunting for a few autographs at the team’s minor league facility in Tampa, Florida.
“We’ll see what happens.”
For now, there’s not much happening at all.