- Alex Rodriguez on Wednesday suggested MLB owners are colluding to keep free agent salaries down.
- Rodriguez noted on ESPN’s “Get Up!” that revenue has increased while salaries for the top players have remained flat, saying, “owners are doing a terrific job working closely together.”
- The MLB free agent market has once again gone cold, as some of the biggest names remain unsigned.
Former MLB star Alex Rodriguez on Wednesday suggested that the league’s teams are colluding to keep salaries down in free agency.
For a second straight year, the MLB’s “hot stove” season has been rather quiet, with the two biggest names, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado, remaining unsigned while teams seemingly waffle on the type of big-salary commitments many expected.
On ESPN’s “Get Up!” on Wednesday, Rodriguez noted that salaries for the top players have mostly stayed flat while revenue has risen in the sport. He said team owners are “working closely together” this offseason.
“For me, what’s interesting about the game and what’s happening is, in 2001, I signed my big deal with the Texas Rangers for $US252 [million],” Rodrigeuz said. “And the industry has tripled in revenues, north of $US10 billion, up from $US2.8 [billion], and the salaries have stayed flat for almost 20 years. It’s mind-blowing. You’d think by now, you would have a player making $US40, $US50, $US60 million with the growth of the game.
“It’s just interesting what’s happening, and the owners are doing a terrific job working closely together, obviously, and keeping these salaries down.”
Rodriguez is not the first player to raise his eyebrows at the tepid open market this offseason. Last week, star players like Evan Longoria and Kris Bryant both made comments about the free-agent market. Longoria called the situation a shame, saying, “It seems every day now someone is making up a new analytical tool to devalue players, especially free agents.”
Bryant called the situation “not good,” saying something needs to change.
Last offseason, former agent and current New York Mets GMBrodie Van Wagenen outright accused MLB owners of collusion and was met with backlash.
Watch Rodriguez’s comments below: