Posted by tecwrg on 8/2/2013 10:37:00 AM (view original):
That would be a horribly bad idea on the part of MLB.
Relations between MLB and the MLBPA right now is the best they have ever been. The past couple of CBAs have been negotiated uneventfully with not even a remote threat of strike/lockout; the MLBPA agreed to the JDA without much public resistance; and, as the Braun case seems to indicate, the MLBPA is willing to work with MLB to clean up the game.
Seeing that the MLBPA has traditionally had the upper hand in labor relations over MLB, it would be a HUGE mistake on the part of MLB to think that the tables have turned to the point where they can now swing the big hammer to beat the MLBPA into submission over this. That would send labor relations back around 15 years.
Would it be a horrible idea? Look at it from their side (not that I'm advocating a lockout in any way):
In every labor negotiation, you have to deal with the strongest union in professional sports. Labor relations are good only because you have accepted that you lose everytime you fight. Now you have a hammer issue that could, in some measure, weaken the union - why not use it? In addition, the ability to void contracts for PED use could be seen as the first step toward gradually getting rid of guaranteed contracts - something you and every other owner would love to do. And you've already learned from the NFL and NHL that you can have a lockout today and bounce back from it just fine.
Again, I'm not saying they should do it. I'm just saying I wouldn't be surprised at all if they did.