Before the storm?… Professional baseball salary negotiations

The atmosphere for salary negotiations in professional baseball is literally on thin ice.

Although the year of the cat was bright, all 10 KBO league clubs failed to finalize the 2023 annual salary contract. Last season, on December 26, before the end of the year, SSG Landers announced that they had completed an annual salary contract with all those subject to renewal in 2022. Other clubs also stepped up and stepped up, but a subtle temperature difference is detected this winter. Inside and outside some clubs, there is talk of “we need a little more time”.

In professional baseball, from 2023, a salary cap system that limits the total annual salary of players to a certain level will be implemented. For three years until 2025, each club is subject to sanctions if the total annual salary of the players exceeds 11.42638 million won. Team A’s general manager said, “The salary cap affects the composition of players. Since it is applied for three years, clubs cannot sign contracts only after looking at this season. They have to think about next year and beyond.” The club needs to operate with a margin considering that the salary will rise in the future. I’m worried because I can’t sign a player who should have paid 300 million won for 200 million won.

” If you do, you will pay 100% of the excess as a penalty, and the right to name in the first round of the following year will drop by 9. As each club is introducing the system for the first time, they are carefully tapping the calculator to avoid being listed on the sanctions list.
Team B’s management team manager said, “If you don’t prepare for the salary cap in advance, you will inevitably be affected. Clubs that have included options in their existing annual salary contracts may have resistance from players. It takes time to convince players to spend their limited budget efficiently. do,” he said. 

Some officials cite an authorized representative (agent) as the reason for the slow negotiations. Team C’s general manager hinted, “As the agent enters into negotiations, it feels like it takes a bit of time.” “Before, I just had to talk openly with the player, but now the agent pulls out all the records and negotiates. That part makes the conversation longer,” he said. did. However, Team B’s management team leader said, “Agents have their strengths and weaknesses. There are tricky points, but there are also cases where it is more comfortable and easier.” It’s easier than for the club to convince the player,” he said.

The focus is on salary adjustments. In professional baseball, players whose salary negotiations are not smooth can apply for arbitration to the KBO by 6:00 pm on January 10th. Players and clubs submit the basis for calculating the annual salary they want to the KBO before five days from the deadline for arbitration, and the arbitration committee will raise either side’s hand. 메이저사이트

However, in this case, the conflict between the salary negotiations is revealed on the surface, so the burden on both the player and the club is not small. In particular, if it is judged that the possibility of accepting the requested amount is small, the player may be more cautious. In previous arbitration applications, the only cases where the player’s requested amount was accepted were Ryu Ji-hyun (then LG Twins) in 2002 and Sovereignty (KT Wiz) in 2021. Lee Dae-ho (then Lotte Giants), who won 7 batting titles in 2010, also lost in salary adjustment. From 2013 to 2020, there were no cases of adjustment applications. An accredited representative said, “Even if the salary negotiations are not smooth, the best scenario is to finish as much as possible without adjustment.”