Major League Baseball just proposed a deal for a shortened 2020 season. Naturally, with games being missed, owners don't want to pay more than they think they should. But the proposal, a long-awaited plan to potentially get some kind of a season in the books, was met with immediate disappointment by the MLB Players Association.
The proposal put forth an 82-game schedule and includes bonuses if postseason games are played, but typically favors players making less money. Rather than a straight-up prorated schedule, the MLB would pay a sliding scale based on a percentage of their prorated salary.
Using the formula, the highest-paid player this season, Mike Trout, would have made $37,666,666 if this year had played out in its entirety. Instead, he'll have a base salary of $5,748,577 – and that's only if he played in every game. His prorated salary would be $19,065,843, but he'd make about 30 percent of that.
As the deal was being finalized, ESPN MLB Insider Jeff Passan compared base salaries with the proposal, as well as prorated salaries with the proposed offers. These numbers ended up adjusting slightly, but they highlight how much money the top stars in the game would lose.
Seen another way: 82-game prorated salaries vs. MLB's proposal
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) May 26, 2020
The proposal includes $200 million in playoff bonuses, depending on how much of the postseason gets played. The division series would bring in $25 million, the league championship $50 million, and the World Series $125 million. Most of those postseason bonuses would go to the higher-paid players.
This deal would actually be fairly beneficial to the majority of the league. 65 percent of players make $1 million or less, so they'd get more than 80 percent of their prorated salaries.
However, players quickly turned down the idea. They believed a March agreement said they'd be paid full prorated salaries when the league began to play again.
The league also considered a 50-50 revenue split with the players, but that idea was swiftly rejected, too.
Now, the league will wait for players to come back with a counteroffer. At the moment, it looks like we're still a long ways away from getting to play ball.