Saturday, April 4, 2015

Two Players Still Active from 1994 MLB Strike

I read an interestingly article yesterday from the USA Today that I felt compelled to share. The article showed how there were only two players active today that were active in 1994 when Major League Baseball was shut down due to a strike that cancelled the World Series. One player is currently on the Colorado Rockies, LaTroy Hawkins, and the other is a member of our very own New York Yankees, Mr. Alex Emmanuel Rodriguez.

Through the 1995 season Major League Baseball went through five strikes, three lockouts, the cancellation of 1,720 games and the 1994 playoffs and World Series and the league has been labor conflict free since. When the new collective bargaining agreement expires after the 2016 season there may not be a single player left in the league that remembers the 1994 work stoppage. Rodriguez, a member of the Seattle Mariners at the time, could be retired by then while Hawkins, a member of the Minnesota Twins in 1994, will more than likely be sipping drinks on a beach somewhere by the start of the 2017 season.

The World Series may have been cancelled, wages may have been lost and the game may have gotten a black eye but in the long run the bruises have seemingly healed, the fans are flocking back to the game and the ends look to justify the means of what those players have fought for. The average salary for a MLB player is now $4 million with the highest AAV eclipsing $30 million per season while the league minimum has gotten all the way to $507,500 in 2015. Players are also, if practical, guaranteed first class jet air, hotel accommodations and single rooms on every single road trip since the 1997 season.

762 players were on active 25 man rosters the day the strike began and none of them are on 40 man rosters today. Both Hawks and Rodriguez were on their respected team’s 40 man rosters and saw their minor league seasons cut short due to the strike. When these players are gone and the new CBA is being negotiated the parties involved will have little to no knowledge or understanding of what a strike or work stoppage could mean to the players and mean to the game. That is scary when you think about it because we aren’t sure if that is a good thing or a bad thing. If one does not learn from the past they are doomed to repeat it and we see a lot of that going on these days… Stay tuned. 

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Sorry for the Capatcha... Blame the Russians :)