MLB agent Brodie Van Wagenen thinks there is a coordinated effort by teams to not sign players and hold down the free agent market this off-season and that it could lead to a spring training boycott by players.
He might not be wrong. There are several teams who haven’t even signed a single free agent.
Via NY Daily News:
The Marlins, Orioles, Braves, Pirates and Rays have not signed a free agent this offseason.
“It feels coordinated, rightly or wrongly, said Van Wagenen, who represents Yoenis Cespedes, Jacob deGrom and Tim Tebow. “Many club Presidents and General Managers with whom we negotiate with are frustrated with the lack of funds to sign the plethora of good players still available, raising further suspicion of institutional influence over the spending. Even the algorithms that have helped determine player salaries in recent years are suggesting dramatically higher values than owners appear willing to spend.”
“Bottom line, the players are upset. No, they are outraged. Players in the midst of long-term contracts are as frustrated as those still seeking employment. Their voices are getting louder and they are uniting in a way not seen since 1994.”
Van Wagenen notes that “a boycott of Spring Training may be a starting point, if behavior doesn’t change.”
This is good news for players that use PEDs. People forget that it was the PED fueled homerun races of the early 2000s that brought baseball back after the strike in 1994.