The Other Collusion

S Aufrecht

… MLB team owners were found to have colluded against players by limiting free-agent contracts in three consecutive offseasons: 1985, 1986, and 1987. The Players Union filed grievances against ownership following each offseason — respectively dubbed Collusion I, II, and III — and an arbitrator sided with the players in each case.

The issue facing players and agents is that the league has learned lessons from the collusion scandals of the past. … the CBA ratified in 2016 restrict[s] spending in such a way that may not technically violate the CBA’s rules against collusion but achieves the same goals … this isn’t a bunch of old rich guys smoking cigars in a dimly lit meeting room while Ueberroth yells at them about fiscal responsibility.

It’s the new, legalized normal … and the last ones to realize that might be the ones impacted the most by it, the ones still sitting around in mid-January waiting for a worthwhile free-agent offer.

—Marc Normandin, SB Nation1

Meanwhile, right here in River City, some dramatic irony:

What’s a fair amount for a billion-dollar company to pay a writer for reporting, writing, and publishing one post per day on the company’s website? Two posts per day? One post per week? Two posts per week? These are the questions Vox Media and SB Nation are batting back and forth as they grind their way, ever so slowly, toward making it look like they’re fairly paying the thousands of (previously unpaid or lowly paid) people who write for their hundreds of sports websites. Based on new SB Nation employment contracts obtained by Deadspin, the company is now paying some team site writers a few dollars per post.

—Laura Wagner, Deadspin2


  1. Normandin, Marc. (2018-Jan-18). MLB collusion, explained. SB Nation. Retrieved from https://www.sbnation.com/mlb/2018/1/18/16882650/mlb-collusion-offseason-free-agency-explainer
  2. Wagner, Laura. (2018-Jul-31). SB Nation Is Paying Workers As Little As $3 Per Blog Post. Deadspin. Retrieved from https://deadspin.com/sb-nation-is-paying-workers-as-little-as-3-per-blog-po-1827998745