Major League Baseball is working on plans to start the 2020 season, but count Tampa Bay Rays star pitcher Blake Snell out unless he is paid in full.
Aside from safety amid the coronavirus pandemic, one of the biggest obstacles toward starting the season is the players’ payment.
In late March, MLB and the players’ association agreed to a deal in which the players would be paid prorated shares of their salaries based on the portion of the 162-game season that is actually played.
Teams now say if games are played without fans in empty ballparks they will lose money and owners are now asking for a 50-50 split in revenue.
Snell is adamant that he will not pick up a baseball if he is not getting everything that was already agreed upon.
"I'm not splitting no revenue. I want all mine," Snell said on a Twitch stream. "Bro, y'all got to understand, too, because y’all going to be like: ‘Bro, play for the love of the game.
"Man, what’s wrong with you, bro? Money should not be a thing.’ Bro, I’m risking my life. What do you mean, ‘It should not be a thing?’ It 100 per cent should be a thing.”
The 2018 AL Cy Young Award winner added: "Y’all gotta understand, man, for me to go, for me to take a pay cut is not happening, because the risk is through the roof, it’s a shorter season less pay.
"I gotta get my money, I'm not playing unless I get mine, okay? And that's just the way it is for me. Like, I'm sorry you guys think differently, but the risk is way the hell higher the amount of money I'm making is way lower, why would I think about doing that? Like you know, I’m just, I'm sorry."
Entering the second year of a five-year, $50million deal, Snell was originally scheduled to make $7million in 2020. He is coming off a disappointing 2019, in which he went 6-8 with a 4.29 ERA in 23 starts while spending two months on the injured list after going 21-5 with a league-leading 1.89 ERA in 2018.
While the money is Snell's biggest argument for not playing, the left-hander did also voice concern over his health and the still many unknowns surrounding the coronavirus.
“If I get the ’rona [coronavirus], guess what happens with that? Oh, yeah, that stays - that's in my body forever. The damage that was done to my body, that’s going to be there forever. So now I got to play with that on top of that.
"So, y'all got to - I mean - you'all got to understand, man, for to go, for me to take a pay cut is not happening because the risk is through the roof, it's a shorter season, less pay.
"Like, bro, this - yeah, man, I’ve got to, no, I’ve got to get my money. I’m not playing unless I get mine, OK? And that’s just the way it is for me.
"Like I’m sorry if you guys think differently, but the risk is way the hell higher and the amount of money I make is way lower. Why would I think about doing that?”
|Coronavirus: MLB to open with Yankees v Nationals and Giants v Dodgers on July 23|
|Coronavirus: MLB explains testing delays after complaints|
|Texas Rangers slugger Joey Gallo tests positive for coronavirus|
|Washington Nationals GM Mike Rizzo slams MLB for delayed test results|
|Coronavirus: Nationals reliever Doolittle blasts US over COVID-19 response|
|Cleveland Indians manager favours changing nickname|
|Coronavirus: Braves pitcher Hernandez opts out of 2020 MLB season|
|Coronavirus: Yankees pair LeMahieu and Cessa test positive for COVID-19|
|Coronavirus: Dodgers´ Price opts out of MLB season due to COVID-19 concerns|
|Coronavirus: Giants´ Posey considering opting out of 2020 season|
|Coronavirus: Freddie Freeman among four Braves with COVID-19|
|Cleveland Indians to discuss changing name amid pressure|
|Angels star Trout still unsure if he´ll play in 2020|
|Coronavirus: Blue Jays granted waiver to train in Canada|
|Cubs pitcher Quintana has thumb surgery for laceration|
|Yankees GM ´very optimistic´ Judge will be ready for opening day|
|Rockies OF Desmond opts out of MLB season|
|Nationals duo Zimmerman and Ross join Arizona´s Leake in opting out of MLB season|
|MLB season will be sprint instead of marathon|
|MLBPA agrees to report to camps on July 1, season to start on July 23 or 24|
|Coronavirus: MLB to impose season schedule after union rejects last offer|
|Coronavirus: MLBPA board reportedly rejects 60-game season proposal|
|Coronavirus: Yankees, Mets will both train in New York if MLB season starts|
|MLB tells players it will not agree to more than 60-game season|
|Coronavirus: Astros player tests positive for COVID-19|
|Coronavirus: Five Phillies players test positive|
|Danger of expanded MLB playoffs is rewarding mediocrity|
|Coronavirus: Players counter MLB´s offer with 70-game proposal|
|Coronavirus: MLB Players Trust commits $1million to support minor leaguers|
|MLB, MLBPA nearing agreement for 2020 season?|
|Coronavirus: MLBPA´s Clark says players ´disgusted´ with MLB commissioner Manfred|
|Astros pitcher Justin Verlander throws off mound|
|Coronavirus: MLBPA rejects latest offer, wants MLB to schedule season|
|Coronavirus: Blue Jays hope to play in Toronto, examining other options|
|Detroit Tigers select 1B Torkelson with top pick in MLB Draft|
|Coronavirus: Manfred says there is ´100 per cent´ chance of MLB season|
|GM: Astros would hold ´spring training´ at home park|
|Pirates pitcher Archer out for 2020 season after surgery|
|Coronavirus: David Price gives $1,000 to Dodgers minor leaguers|
|Coronavirus: MLB´s proposal for more salary cuts a non-starter – Scherzer|
|Coronavirus: Tampa Bay Rays open Tropicana Field for limited workouts|
|Rangers would prefer to hold second spring training at new stadium|
|Coronavirus: Nationals to receive World Series rings in virtual ceremony|
|Coronavirus: Former Astros, Athletics manager Howe in ICU with COVID-19|
|With the DH likely coming to all of MLB, which NL hitters would benefit the most?|
|Cashman: Yankees star Judge set to return at full capacity|
|Coronavirus: Rays star pitcher Snell refuses to play unless he gets full salary|
|Coronavirus: Nationals reliever Doolittle concerned about starting MLB season|
|Coronavirus: MLB to bring restart proposal to players, report says|
|Coronavirus: Less than one per cent of MLB employees test positive for COVID-19 antibodies|
|Coronavirus: MLB reportedly shortens 2020 draft from 40 rounds to five|
|Coronavirus: Stars salute return of baseball in South Korea|
|Red Sox outfielder Verdugo says he´s physically 100 per cent|
|Coronavirus: Rays´ Snell wins ´MLB The Show´ Players League championship|
|Former Athletics and All-Star pitcher Keough dies aged 64|
|No fans for MLB games? It´s happened before|
|Astros´ Verlander makes significant progress following groin surgery|
|Coronavirus: Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony postponed until 2021|
|Orioles star Mancini not expecting to play in 2020 due to colon cancer|
|Red Sox docked draft pick, Cora suspended one year for sign stealing|
|NTSB: MLB Hall of Famer Roy Halladay had drugs in system, doing stunts when plane crashed|
|Coronavirus: Arizona governor says state willing to host all 30 MLB teams in empty ballparks|
|Former MLB manager Jim Frey dies at 88|
|Yankees general partner, co-chairperson Hank Steinbrenner dies aged 63|
|Former All-Star Glenn Beckert dies at 79|
|Reynolds announces retirement after 13 years in MLB|
|Yankees again top Forbes´ annual MLB valuations|
|Who will shine and who will struggle due to delayed MLB schedule?|
|Coronavirus: MLB insists nothing decided amid reports season will start in May|
|MLB Hall of Famer and Detroit Tigers legend Al Kaline dead at 85|