Much talk of MLB in the 2017-18 offseason has concerned one of two things. The slow free agent market, which still has many of the game’s top free agents unsigned, and the pace of the game. On Tuesday, Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star Justin Turner made it known what he thinks the top priority should be.
The pace of the game has been an initiative brought forth by Rob Manfred essentially since he became commissioner. In a more normal situation, we could point out that commissioners are just acting on behalf of the owners. But, while we’re sure he has support of at least some owners, this issue has been uniquely Manfred’s since essentially Day 1.
The issue of the players remaining unsigned isn’t really on the commissioner.
Depending on your perspective, that either lies with the owners for not offering sufficient contracts, or with the players/agents for not accepting them. You can read the recent comments from both MLB and executive director to the players union Tony Clark to judge for yourself.
There’s certainly no surprise that a player would want to see his fellow players signed. But while there’s nothing wrong with Turner’s comments, the two issues aren’t exactly related — even if they have some common fighters.