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Union complains to MLB commissioner about Marlins' offseason

Tim Healey, Sun Sentinel on

Published in Baseball

The Miami Marlins' unusual first offseason under CEO Derek Jeter -- trading their best players and signing, so far, zero major-league free agents -- has caught the attention of the MLB Players Association. And not in a good way.

The MLBPA has complained to the commissioner regarding the Marlins' recent personnel moves and the league's revenue-sharing rules.

The union similarly took issue with the Pittsburgh Pirates, who have traded franchise stars Andrew McCutchen and Gerrit Cole this month and also signed zero free agents this offseason.

"We have raised our concerns regarding both Miami and Pittsburgh with the Commissioner, as is the protocol under the collective bargaining agreement and its Revenue Sharing provisions," union spokesman Greg Bouris said in a statement. "We are waiting to have further dialogue and that will dictate our next steps."

MLB said in a statement that it does not have concerns about the Marlins (or Pirates) with regard to revenue-sharing issues.

"The Marlins' ownership purchased a team that incurred substantial financial losses the prior two seasons, and even with revenue sharing and significant expense reduction, the team is projected to lose money in 2018," the league said. "The Union has not informed us that it intends to file a grievance against either team."

The Marlins declined to comment.

MLB's revenue-sharing system redistributes money from high-revenue teams to low-revenue teams. The receiving clubs are supposed to then re-invest that money into baseball operations.

The Marlins -- with infamous perennially low revenues -- are receiving more than $50 million via that system, according to Yahoo Sports. That report also said the MLBPA is investigating whether to file a formal grievance against the Marlins and Pirates, but the "process to go from investigating a grievance to filing one is long, and ... it could prove a difficult case to make."

Filing a grievance is not the same as merely voicing concern, which is all the union has done so far.

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