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1997 - 2000 (+ '01 union opt.) PDF Print E-mail
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CBA Summaries
Written by Jeff Euston   
Friday, 02 February 2007 03:20

Link: A copy of the 1997 -2000 (2001) Basic Agreement

Duration - 4 years, plus 2001 union option 

  • Nov. 6, 1996 – Owners vote 18-12 to reject agreement reached in October between their chief negotiator, Randy Levine, and Donald Fehr, the executive director of the players’ union.
  • Nov. 27, 1996 – Owners vote 26-4 to approve new Basic Agreement.
  • March 14, 1997 – Owners and players formally agree to a contract through the 2000 season with a union option to extend it through 2001.  The new Basic Agreement provides for a significant increase in revenue sharing and a luxury tax on the five highest-payroll teams from 1997 to 1999.
  • Oct. 28, 1998 – President Clinton signs Curt Flood Act, revoking baseball’s antitrust exemption for labor matters, but not for matters involving relocation, expansion or the minor leagues. 


  • Acting Commissioner Bud Selig
  • MLB:  Randy Levine (chief negotiator, PRC)
  • MLBPA: Executive Director Donald Fehr
  • Associate General Counsel Gene Orza

  • Player Reps: Sandy Alomar Jr., Ricky Bottalico, Brett Butler, David Cone, Jim Corsi, Mark Dewey, Shawn Green, Brian Johnson, Al Leiter, Al Martin, Dennis Martinez, Derrick May, Brian McRae, Jeff Montgomery, Hal Morris, Lyle Mouton, C.J. Nitkowski, Jim Poole, B.J. Surhoff, Walt Weiss, Dan Wilson


  • Term: 1997 – Oct. 31, 2000 (Oct. 31, 2001, with exercise of union option)
  • Free Agency: Eligibility unchanged from the 1990-1993 CBA.
  • Salary Arbitration: Eligibility unchanged from the 1990-1993 CBA. Any player with three years of service and less than six years of service may file. The top 17 percent of players with two-plus years of service also qualify.
  • Minimum Salary: The minimum salary is increased to $150,000 for 1997, $170,000 for 1998, and $200,000 for 1999, 2000 and 2001.
  • Scheduling: The agreement institutes inter-league play, with American League teams playing regular-season game against National League teams for the first time.
  • Revenue Sharing:  Revenue-sharing provisions will transfer about $40 million on a “split pool” basis from richer clubs to poorer clubs in 1996 and 1997, with the amount increasing in succeeding years.
  • Competitive Balance Tax: Under the new agreement, a competitive balance tax, or luxury tax, will be levied upon the five highest-payroll teams from 1997 to 1999.
  • Pension: Owners agree to increase their contributions to the players’ pension fund, including $70 million in 2002.


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