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Yankees ace Gerrit Cole on players union meetings: ‘Exciting to see solidarity this high’ during MLB lockout

Gerrit Cole Yankees MLB Lockout
Yankees ace Gerrit Cole
Gregory Fisher-USA TODAY Sports

New York Yankees ace Gerrit Cole was one of over 100 ballplayers who made their way down to Arizona to meet with MLBPA representation this week. 

“I was at our PA meeting in AZ and it was exciting to see solidarity this high,” Cole tweeted. “We had 100+ players show up and are united to protect the integrity of the game.”

Cole is an alternate pension committee representative for the players’ union — one of four New York ballplayers with a prominent role on the union’s executive subcommittee. Both Francisco Lindor and Max Scherzer of the New York Mets are player representatives while Yankees reliever Zach Britton is also a pension committee representative. 

The union continues its preparations for what Major League Baseball and its owners will do next after little progress has been made in negotiations to strike a deal on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. The owners opted to lock the players out on Dec. 2 after the previous CBA expired. 

The owners are currently meeting down in Florida to come up with their next steps. After promising the players that they would present a counter-offer to their latest proposal that wasn’t received well at the end of January, the owners came back with the hopes of bringing in a third-party mediator to help spark negotiations. That even included US Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh offering his services to oversee negotiations. 

It was a proposal quickly shot down by the players.

“We don’t need mediation because what we are offering to MLB is fair for both sides,” Scherzer tweeted on Friday. 

The hope is that the owners will come back with a counter-offer at some point this week on core economics rather than opining for third-party mediation. However, it could come paired with an announcement that spring training will officially be delayed — which is expected at this point. Pitchers and catchers are scheduled to report on Feb. 14, which is just a few days away and offers little time for the owners and players to suddenly come to an agreement.

 

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