Atlanta Braves arbitration win one of many forcing MLB to rethink arbitration

 Atlanta Braves starter Max Fried denies any ill will over the arbitration process.
Atlanta Braves starter Max Fried denies any ill will over the arbitration process. / Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
1 of 3

In the days since the arbitration panel selected the Atlanta Braves contract in Max Fried’s arbitration hearing, players from other teams are openly condemning the process.

Last week, I wrote explaining why the arbitration system exists, how the process works, discussed the Fried decision, and concluded that an extension was possible. Shortly after that post went live, Fried told the world he harbored no hard feelings about the decision. Seth broke down his comments a few days ago and came to a less optimistic conclusion. Fried took the result in stride, Brewers' number one starter Corbin Burnes took the news personally.

As I noted last week, owners don’t like the system any more than the players, so it wasn’t a huge surprise when MLB announced that its newly formed Economic Reform Committee would look at ways to reform or replace the system.

Tensions Rising?

Today Ken Rosenthal suggested in The Athletic (subscription required) that the debate over MLB salary arbitration rulings could translate to another battle.

It’s true that, on a personal level, players don’t like arbitration. However, as a matter of policy, the MLBPA likes the system. A union spokesman told Rosenthal why the MLBPA supports arbitration.

"“While we often disagree with individual hearing results, salary arbitration is a right that generations of players have fought for and defended despite. . .It empowers players who are under club control and their agents to negotiate a salary or, . . .have an arbitration panel step in to determine that salary.”"

This year, 14 of the 33 players who filed for arbitration settled or signed extensions. Thirteen of the remaining 19 players went to a hearing ended up with the contract offered by the team. Only six players saw their offer accepted.+