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Labor deal to be unveiled

October 24, 2006|Tim Brown

ST. LOUIS — Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Assn. intend to announce tonight that they have agreed to a new collective bargaining agreement that will run through 2011, according to a source familiar with the negotiations.

Reflective of the economic health of the sport, which this year is expected to generate $5.2 billion in total revenue, the announcement will close the least contentious negotiations in 40 years. There will be few dramatic changes from the previous agreement, which was created in August 2002 and was due to expire in December.

The Joint Drug Agreement, a three-strikes-and-you're-out policy with graduated punishments of 50 games, 100 games and a lifetime ban, was attached to the current CBA and runs through 2008.

The new agreement will make a subtle change in compensation to teams that lose free agents, according to the New York Times, which reported teams would receive draft picks for departing high-end free agents, but not others.

The agreement also will maintain revenue sharing and luxury taxes, designed to help small-market franchises compete.

Commissioner Bud Selig was on his way to St. Louis on Monday night. Union chief Don Fehr also was expected to attend the announcement.

-- Tim Brown

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