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Union, Management Officials to Discuss Freeze on Signings

October 13, 1994|ROSS NEWHAN

Eugene Orza, associate general counsel of the baseball players' union, said Wednesday he expects to continue conversations with management officials today on the owners' request for a 45-day freeze on contract signings and a delay in the start of free-agent filing from Saturday to Nov. 30.

However, Orza said collective bargaining, tentatively scheduled to resume today, would probably not resume until next week because of business and travel commitments by many of the key people.

He also said that the union would not make a decision on the freeze until Tuesday or Wednesday and that eligible players would be advised to hold off filing until then. The union believes the freeze is designed strictly to give owners time to decide what provisions they want to retain in the salary-cap proposal they plan to implement and to shorten the off-season decision time for prospective free agents and players in general.

The owners, citing the possibility of a bargaining agreement or eventual implementation of the salary-cap proposal, say the freeze would prevent the possibility of players signing under two sets of rules while giving the two sides an extended period to concentrate on negotiations. Management lawyers have said they will consider imposing the freeze unilaterally if it is rejected, an act that would probably prompt the union to file a collusion grievance.

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