We’ve had a full week to consider the implications of what Marcell Ozuna has done — to his wife, himself, and his team. Let’s break down the expected path to be taken from here.
We’ve put it off long enough: what can the Atlanta Braves do now that they’re very likely never to see their left fielder in uniform for another game in their colors?
Turns out the answer is probably… quite a lot. But that’s only if they really dig in and take the initiative to fully and completely replace that bat in their lineup.
That’s the subject of this week’s podcast — one that delves deep into the subjects of labor law handling, the expected timelines of Ozuna’s inevitable days in court, and the possible outcomes that can be expected.
We also call on Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Union to come together for a truly ironclad stand against domestic violence by permitting any club with a player committing a punishable offense against women to terminate the services of that player without having to pay off the balance of any existing contract.
Look: this is important. On multiple occasions, we’ve seen crimes committed against women and children by players and seen the perpetrator get away with the behavior by ultimately getting the monies owed them under the terms of a guaranteed contract.
Those days should be over. Done. I don’t care if we’re talking about a minimum-salaried rookie or somebody with a contract like that of Mike Trout. Even if you remove the player from the sport, the idea that they can still live comfortably off what amounts to a Golden Parachute check seems nearly as reprehensible as the original crime itself.
However, the way things stand today, the MLB Players Association actually puts itself in the position of defending the perpetrator by defending the sacred guaranteed contract.
From a labor law point of view, that’s the kind of hill unions choose to die on. From virtually any other perspective, it’s simply being on the wrong side of the argument.
This podcast discusses all of that and how the Atlanta Braves can — and should — respond in baseball team-building terms. In short: they will have options.
[CLARIFICATION: I have been urging the Braves to act immediately based on the expectation that Ozuna would be placed on the Restricted List almost immediately — and salary could be withheld from him at that point. That thought is expressed in today’s podcast as well. For reasons detailed in a new post from our Fred Owens, this has not happened yet, and while we do expect such a procedural move, it cannot happen as quickly as I have implied. I apologize for the confusion created. ]
The audio can be directly downloaded from here: it can also be heard via the following player or found by searching “TomahawkTake” on most podcast subscription provider sites.
Thanks for listening. This particular episode hit home with us. We hope that changes are made as the next Collective Bargaining Agreement is hammered out this Winter.