MLB Hot Stove: How the baseball team’s impending lockdown is affecting free agency

The owners of Major League Baseball are expected to lock down players this week, after the current Collective Bargaining Agreement expires at 11:59 p.m. ET on December 1. , which will be MLB’s first shutdown since 1994-95, will remain in place until a new CBA can be agreed upon and then ratified by the owners and players’ unions.

Given that it’s been almost three decades since the league was last closed, you might be wondering exactly what that means for hot stoves. Below, we’ve done our best to answer five questions about an impending account lockout and how it will affect transactions.

1. Can freelancers sign during the lockdown?

Are not. You won’t see Carlos Correa, Corey Seager, or any other notable freelancer put pen to paper during the lockdown. If they are a member of MLB Players Associations are not eligible to change teams during the downtime. Those players will have to wait until the new CBA is approved to sign; depending on the timing of the CBA agreement, that could force them to make a quick decision.

2. What about Seiya Suzuki?

Suzuki was the best player with Nippon Professional Baseball’s Hiroshima Toyo Carp club. In addition to being the top international free agent available this winter, he is also one of the top free agents available in general, #15 on our top 50 list. In a regular season, MLB . Teams only 30 days after Suzuki was “registered” to reach an agreement with him; if not, he will stay in Japan. However, this season is expected to see Suzuki’s 30-day deadline put on hold during an extended layoff, potentially resulting in the process being stretched beyond normal orderliness.

3. How has free agency been affected so far?

It’s hard to say how much recent activity is due to the impending lockdown and what percentage of it is due to the typical Thanksgiving rush to complete transactions. Since Sunday, 10 of CBS Sports Top 50 Free Agents Signed, including four of the top 25 dealers. League sources told CBS Sports on Saturday that Kevin Gausman appears to be on the verge of making a decision, while Max Scherzer also expressed a desire to find a home before locking the door. At a minimum, the impending downtime ensures that the holiday period will have two parts: this “before” phase and then the meat “after” after the new CBA is agreed.

4. Can teams make trades?

Yes and no. You won’t see trades involving players on the 40 list or others in the league, but you can still see the prospect of swapping teams. In general, minor leagues will not be affected by the shutdown as they are not members of (nor are they represented by) the MLB Players Association.

5. How long will the lock last?

This is a big, unanswerable question, but insiders who spoke to CBS Sports have suggested it will be counted in months, not days or weeks. That doesn’t mean spring training or the regular season will be affected, necessarily; that means most dealers and free deals can be included in a small, busy window. Please note that the season can go on as usual without the CBA; The owner’s decision to lock the players will bring everything to a halt. MLB Hot Stove: How the baseball team’s impending lockdown is affecting free agency


Aila Slisco is a Interreviewed U.S. News Reporter based in London. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Aila Slisco joined Interreviewed in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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