Six Blue Jays games officially cancelled due to MLB lockout

Mar 1 2022, 11:32 pm

Toronto Blue Jays baseball will not be back this month.

Major League Baseball announced the cancellation of the first two series for each team this season after MLBPA leaders unanimously agreed not to accept MLB’s final proposal for a new collective bargaining agreement (CBA) before a 5 pm ET deadline.

“Rob Manfred and MLB’s owners have cancelled the start of the season. Players and fans around the world who love baseball and disgusted, but sadly not surprised,” the MLBPA said in a statement.

“From the beginning of these negotiations, Players’ objectives have been consistent — to promote competition, provide fair compensation for young Players, and to uphold the integrity of our market system. Against the backdrop of growing revenues and record profits, we are seeking nothing more than a fair agreement.

“We are united and committed to negotiating a fair deal that will improve the sport for Players, fans and everyone who loves our game.”

MLB had threatened to cancel Opening Day, set for March 31, without a new deal.Ā 

“We worked hard to avoid an outcome that’s bad for our fans, bad for our players, and bad for our clubs,” Manfred said in a press conference. “I want to assure our fans that our failure to reach an agreement was not due to lack of effort for either party.

“The calendar dictates that we’re not going to be able to play the first two series of the regular season and those games are officially cancelled.”

Players are currently locked out by MLB after the expiration of its previous CBA. It’s the first time in 27 years MLB will miss games because of a lockout, with the last coming in 1994.

The two sides negotiated for nine consecutive days before failing to reach an agreement in advance of the deadline. MLB ownership group had implemented a self-imposed deadline for delaying the start of the leagueā€™s regular season.

ā€œThe concerns of our fans are at the very top of our consideration list,” Manfred said.

Issues on the table include discussing and improving the payment structures for younger and minor league players, as well as the structure of the leagueā€™s collective bargaining tax, more commonly known as a luxury tax.

Toronto was originally scheduled to open the season with a three-game series against the Baltimore Orioles before another three-game set against the Tampa Bay Rays. They are now scheduled to open April 8 against the Texas Rangers.

The Blue Jays missed the playoffs by one game last season, finishing fourth in the AL East with a 91-71 record.

Aaron VickersAaron Vickers

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