Sports Law Blog
All things legal relating
to the sports world...
Thursday, April 08, 2010
More MLB Collusion in 2010? Unions' Claims Keep Coming

On Tuesday morning, the Associated Press reported that the Major League Baseball Players Association may file a grievance against Major League Baseball club-owners for allegedly colluding in the market to sign free-agent players during the 2009-2010 off-season. One reason why the MLB players union seems to believe that club-owners have engaged in collusion is because player salaries rose only by 1% last season, even though total league revenues have increased at an annual rate of 7.6% over the past three years .

Another reason why the MLBPA may be concerned about collusion is that MLB club-owners have a long history of colluding in the free-agent player market. For example, in my 2008 Wayne Law Review article, "Moving Past Collusion in Major League Baseball: Healing Old Wounds and Preventing New Ones," I discuss how three arbitration decisions from the 1980s found MLB club-owners to have colluded against players' rights. One esteemed labor arbitrator, George Nicolau, even found Commissioner Bud Selig to have been directly involved in collusion during the 1986-87 off-season (see pages 619-20).

With this week's newest collusion concerns, the MLBPA now has to decide whether to file a formal labor grievance over three separate, outstanding sets of claims:
  • Then, there are similar allegations from the 2008-09 off-season, over which the MLBPA, one year after announcing its concerns, still has not filed a grievance.
(Cross-Posted on Sports Judge Blog)


Post a Comment