Meeting on Ground Rules Set Before Talks Resume
Don Fehr, executive director of the Major League Baseball Players Assn., will meet today with Richard Ravitch, the owners’ chief negotiator, to establish ground rules for the resumption of collective bargaining on Wednesday, when Ravitch will be joined by five owners and club officials selected by acting commissioner Bud Selig.
“I assume this means we’ll be arguing about the shape of the table,” Fehr said of today’s meeting.
Federal mediators will join the two sides on Tuesday, with Wednesday’s negotiating session being the first since the strike.
Fehr was not optimistic about the resumption of talks, having seen no evidence, he said, that the owners intend to change their position regarding a salary cap.
“They set out to have a strike, and they’ll negotiate to end it when they want to end it,” he said.
Selig, meanwhile, is expected to reveal a pool of 10 to 12 owners today, from which five will attend the negotiating sessions.
Although sources indicate otherwise, Selig denied Sunday that he has been under pressure from owners to change his initial list, but he said it has undergone “a fair amount of tinkering” over the weekend.
The initial list included Selig’s daughter, Wendy Selig-Prieb, the Milwaukee Brewers’ vice president-general counsel; Chicago White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf; Philadelphia Phillie executive vice president David Montgomery; Minnesota Twin general manager Andy MacPhail; Toronto Blue Jay president Paul Beeston; Houston Astro owner Drayton McLane; Colorado Rockie owner Jerry McMorris; Seattle Mariner CEO John Ellis; Atlanta Brave president Stan Kasten, and Boston Red Sox owner John Harrington.