Unemployment in MLB: What have been the 9 strikes in the history of Major League Baseball?


It took 27 years for a strike within baseball to become official. Big leagues, adding 9 work stoppages throughout history, although this situation does not seem to affect the development of the 2022 season, because the winter break can serve as time to negotiate agreements between the MLB and the Players Union.

Although the primary cause of the unemployment was the expiration of the labor contract between MLB and the Players Guild, Furthermore, both parties have not agreed on the new labor contract and this caused all baseball activities in the United States to stop.

The advantage of forcing the stoppage in the winter season, serves in a way to reach an agreement before starting the next season with an eye on Spring Training. Rob Manfred, MLB commissioner, said in a letter published to the fans that the best thing that can happen at this time is to have the strike at the present time.

We believe that an out-of-season lockout is the best mechanism to protect the 2022 season “Manfred said in the statement.

Strikes in Major League Baseball

Major League Baseball have had 9 work stoppages in its history, although the most remembered was the one carried out in 1994, forcing the halt of all activities and the suspension of the World Series. On this occasion, the delivery lasted seven months and was the one that gave more problems in a season of baseball in the United States.

1972 strike

Major League Baseball’s first strike occurred in April 1972, from day 1 to day 13, losing 86 games in total. This was caused by a collective bargaining issue and was solved when the team owners and the players reached an agreement to increase the salary of the pension funds to $ 500,000 dollars.

On the other hand, the 86 games lost during those 13 days were not rescheduled because the MLB did not want to pay the players while they were on strike.

The strikes of 1973, 1976, 1980, 1985 and 1990

The strikes that occurred in these years occurred in periods when collective contracts between the team owners and the players’ unions were negotiated on time. Unlike 1972, 1981 and 1994, the ball games were not suspended and the seasons ended at the corresponding time.

In 1994, fans flocked to stadiums with banners asking not to go on strike. (Photo: Getty Images)

The 1981 strike

The 1981 strike in MLB it was a consequence of one that occurred a year earlier, due to the fact that an agreement was not reached on the compensation of free agents and, without being resolved, the 1980 season was concluded, but the parties set up a collective committee to negotiate between the MLB Players Association and the owners. In view of the fact that no agreement was reached, the start of the season was waited in 81 and stopped by 50 days Major League Baseball.

In total they were lost 713 games and the season was played in two halves, with the first starting on April 9 through June 11. The second half was played from August 10 to October 4.

In 1994 the strike caused the immediate shutdown of MLB baseball in the middle of the season. (Photo: Getty Images)

The 1994 strike in full season

The year 1994 is remembered for having suffered the longest players’ strike in history after the expiration of the collective labor agreement On December 31, 1993 and without having made a decision, the MLB Players Association decided to stop all activities due to this labor dispute.

Although the negotiations lasted for 8 months, the conflict came because the players’ association did not agree with the proposal of the owners of the MLB teams, where the collective contract affected them individually.

Part of the causes that produced this conflict was the very proposal to have a salary cap, something that today is very common in some other sports disciplines in the United States, precisely so that there are no large differences in the salaries of the juadores.

The players’ union, for its part, rejected the measure and began the strike. On the one hand, the union and the team owners tried to end the conflict to play the Playoffs, but this did not happen because the strike lasted until April 1995.

In total, the 1994 strike resulted in the cancellation of 938 games, the postseason and the World Series, although in 1995 the season started on April 25, having a considerable delay where they were lost 144 games.

Between 1994 and 1995 they were lost 1082 games baseball for the conflict that ended negotiations during Spring Training.

Chicago Cubs fans also protested the 1994 decision to stop baseball (Photo: Getty Images)

In 2002, baseball was about to go on a general strike that could harm the development of the season as in 1994, because the agreement between the owners and the players did not agree with some working conditions.

The players announced that on August 30, 2002 they would go on a general strike, but three and a half hours before an agreement was reached and the season did not suffer any setbacks. On the other hand, the MLB and the Players Association have been able to continue with their collective bargaining negotiations without actually paralyzing baseball, something that happened in 2006, 2011 and 2016.