Labor Secretary Marty Walsh offers to pinch hit and help end MLB’s lockout

With a delay to MLB spring training looming, a member of President Biden’s administration wants to take a swing at helping the league and the players union solve their dispute.

According to multiple reports, U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh has told both Major League Baseball and its Players Association that he is willing to help the two parties find a solution. Politico’s Jonathan Lemire first reported Mr. Walsh’s offer. 

“I have spoken to both the MLBPA and MLB about the ongoing contract negotiations and encourage both sides to continue engagement,” a spokesperson for Mr. Walsh said to The Athletic’s Evan Drellich. “Like any contract negotiation in any industry, I stand ready to help facilitate productive conversations that result in the best outcome for workers and employers.”

With reportedly not much progress made so far this offseason, a lockout that pushes back the start of spring training — and possibly the regular season — seems likely. Mr. Walsh’s statement comes after the players union rejected the league’s offer of including a third-party mediator to speed up the talks. The two sides are scheduled to meet again Tuesday. 

Mr. Walsh, the mayor of Boston from 2014 to 2021, is the first former union leader to lead the Department of Labor in about 45 years. 

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