Rob Manfred Taking 35% Pay Cut While Demanding Much More Of Players

Back in March, Major League Baseball and the Player’s Association agreed the players would receive a prorated portion of their salaries predicated upon how many games were played in 2020. This has now devolved into a he said-she said with owners trying to back out of the deal and push for players to cut their salaries more than previously agreed.

Based upon the proposed revised season from the owners, there would be an 81 game season. Even if the previously agreed upon deal was honored by both sides, that would mean each player would receive half of their 2020 salary. As an example, Marcus Stroman would only make $6 million out of his $12 million salary.

However, the proposal MLB made earlier this week would not allow Stroman to make his $6 million let alone the $12 he agreed upon in arbitration. No, MLB wants to pay him MUCH less than that. As part of what could be described as a union busting plan, MLB proposed staggering ADDITIONAL pay cuts to the players. Jeff Passan of ESPN broke down the percentages:

Just to let you know how this works math works out, Passan used Mike Trout, the highest paid player in the game, as an example. Trout was due to make $36.7 million in 2020. Under the proposal presented by MLB, Trout’s salary would be reduced from $36.7 million to $5,748,577. That’s a pay cut of roughly 85%.

Running through the same convoluted math for Stroman, and we see his $12 million salary be reduced to roughly $2.7 million. That is a 78% pay cut. More than that, Stroman is being less than what Michael Wacha‘s $3 million base salary was supposed to be in 2020, but unlike Wacha, he’s not going to get incentives to raise his salary.

Let’s compare that to Commissioner Rob Manfred.

According to rumors, Manfred earns $11 million per year as the commissioner of baseball. If we were to use the same formula for Manfred as we used for the players, Manfred’s $11 million salary would drop to approximately $2.6 million. That would be an approximate 76% pay cut.

However, that is not what Manfred is doing. No, he is only cutting his salary by 35%. That means instead of the $2.6 million he would make as a player, he is going to make $7.15 million.

Keep in mind, Manfred is not going to have to assume the risk of playing games and traveling. He is not going to have to be separated from his family for months on end. He is not going to have to experience the same level of exposure to COVID19 as the players will if the season ever resumes. No, Manfred has the option to work from home or from an office he can dictate screening procedures. He can go home to his family every night.

Even if we take the owners who won’t open their books at face value and accept they can’t proceed with a season paying players at the previously collectively bargained amounts, there needs to be an explanation why Manfred should only take a 35% pay cut while Stroman takes a 78% pay cut.

We need an explanation why Manfred should make more money off of his $11 million than Trout will make off of his $36.7 million. Seriously, Manfred is currently slated to make about $1.45 million more than Trout. When you look at it that way, you understand a little more why Max Scherzer responded on behalf of the players the way he did:

In the end, fans have taken different positions on this fight between the players and owners. Many are frustrated in what they see as a fight between billionaires and millionaires. While we have the right to our own opinions, and we can understand people’s frustrations, we should be at least able to agree a system where Manfred’s pay is cut only 35% and players’ salaries are cut anywhere from 70 – 85% is unfair, and no one should be defending Manfred and the owners pursuing such an inequity.