How The New MLB Collective Bargaining Agreement Changes Baseball

Were there supposed to be this many changes in the Collective Bargaining Agreement? One minute, baseball is humming along, making money, and drawing fans. Then for five seconds, we have the word “LOCKOUT” dangling over our heads. And now there are all sorts of … newthings. Funky draft-pick compensation. International bonus pools. A shorter disabled list, which is going to be weirder than the Astros in the American League.

And (inhale) the All-Star Game will not decide the home-field advantage in the World Series (big, satisfied exhale). Also, international players will make less money because owners can’t control themselves, but look at the shiny change to the All-Star Game!

I’ve been looking at this stuff for a couple hours, and I’m still wrapping my brain around it. So to help us all out, it’s time to grade the changes to the new CBA and baseball on a scale from one Selig (horrible change) to five Seligs (fantastic change). What’s new with baseball, and will these changes make the sport better?

The 10-day disabled list

I spend about 40 or 50 percent of my waking life thinking about baseball. If that seems like a humblebrag, it isn’t, please help me, I beg of you, please help me, anyway, in all those hours thinking about baseball, I never once stopped to consider the practical implications of the 15-day disabled list. It was just the 15-day disabled list. It existed. It had always existed. The pilgrims traveled the Atlantic with 15-day disabled lists in their holds.

Except this makes sense. Pitchers can go on the DL and miss a start or two, not two starts or three. Yet it’s long enough to prevent teams from monkeying around with DL trips to gain an extra roster spot for a short stretch. It will make the decision to put a player on the DL much less stressful.

Maybe this is coming from a fan of the team that has perfected the “play with 24 players for 14 days before finally putting Angel Pagan on the DL” move, but I’m in love. I can get used to this! A 10-day disabled list.

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