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MLB gives out a championship belt to team that keeps salaries lowest in arbitration

USA TODAY SPORTS logo USA TODAY SPORTS 3/29/2019 Jesse Yomtov
a group of baseball players standing on top of a table © Provided by USA Today Sports Media Group LLC

As discontent continues to boil in Major League Baseball's labor situation, The Athletic reported on a shocking revelation – that the league hands out an actual championship belt every year to the team that did best to keep salaries lowest in arbitration.

The league acknowledged the existence the belt, calling it “an informal recognition of those club’s salary arbitration departments that did the best.”

The league has been consistently accused of collusion by agents, players and the MLB Players Association, but that claim that has been denied by commissioner Rob Manfred.

While the vast majority of arbitration salaries are agreed upon before club and player do battle in a conference room, 32 players have gone to arbitration over the past two winters, with 18 players winning their cases.

MLB SALARIES: Team-by-team

TRENDING: Baseball's middle class disappears

Earlier this offseason, Indians pitcher Trevor Bauer said he faced "character assassination" from MLB’s labor relations department during his hearing.

Baseball's labor concerns have grown louder over the past two winters as free agents have struggled to get the kind of contracts they might have in years past.

The current collective bargaining agreement doesn't expire until 2021 and there have been calls for a strike at that point.

https://theathletic.com/888513/2019/03/29/ready-to-strike-tomorrow-how-one-20-trinket-captures-the-strife-within-a-10-billion-industry/

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: MLB gives out a championship belt to team that keeps salaries lowest in arbitration

Related slideshow: The 2019 MLB season (Provided by imagn) 

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