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Report: Rob Manfred could implement shortened 2020 MLB season within a week

Matt Johnson
MLB commissioner Rob Manfred speaks to reporters
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Major League Baseball and the MLB Players’ Association have been locked in negotiations for months on a plan for the 2020 season. Now, with patience wearing thin on both sides, commissioner Rob Manfred could soon implement a shortened MLB season.

MLB commissioner Rob Manfred may implement shortened season within a week

On Tuesday, owners publicly pushed back against the latest proposal from the players’ union for the 2020 MLB season. The new offer reduced the length of the regular season from 114 games to 89 with an expanded playoffs and players receiving fully prorated salaries.

The offer came in response to a proposal earlier in the week from MLB. Under the league’s outline, there would be a 76-game regular season and players would have received 75% of their prorated salary.

MLB’s offer largely matched up with its previous offers, which drew criticism from players across the league. Both sides are fighting over what percentage of 2020 salaries players will receive this season with players pushing for prorated portions and owners asking them to take significantly less.

According to USA Today’s Bob Nightengale, multiple executives expect Rob Manfred to implement a shortened season without the MLBPA’s approval if a deal can’t be reached. The decision, which could lead to a season with approximates 50 games, could be made within a week.

If both sides can’t reach an agreement, Manfred will defer to the powers given to him under the agreement made in March. In that deal, MLB agreed to give players fully prorated salaries and service time this year and Manfred received the authority to determine the length of the season.

MLB and the MLBPA will likely keep negotiating through the end of the week. If a deal can’t be reached, then it will just be a matter of time before Manfred announces his decision.