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Legal and Governmental Obstacles to Implementing an International Draft in the MLB

By Traven Tapson


This paper considers whether the implementation of an international draft by Major League Baseball (MLB) will be possible. Over the last five years, the MLB has increasingly placed more stringent limitations on international spending, which has limited the bargaining power of international free agents. Many in the international market believe that the agreement between the MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) during the 2016 Collective Bargaining (CBA) negotiations are progressing towards an international draft, which would have a crippling effect on the future of baseball in many foreign countries. This paper is focused on the countries that stand to suffer the most should an international draft be implemented: the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, and Cuba. Currently there is little reliable research on this topic. Based on extensive research and interviews with both current and former international scouts, MLB baseball operations personnel, and employees working in the Labor Department in the MLB Commissioner’s Office, this paper suggests that while the MLB maintains that an international draft will be implemented in upcoming collective bargaining agreements, the obstacles in implementing an international draft will prove to be insurmountable

Topics: International Draft, MLB, Venezuela, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Entertainment, Arts, and Sports Law, Law
Publisher: Scholarship @ Claremont
Year: 2017
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