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MLB officially cancels second week of games, earliest possible Opening Day now April 14

Two days of intense negotiations could not save a 162-game season, and now more games are cancelled.

Atlanta Braves v Milwaukee Brewers Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Over the past two days, there was some hope that an agreement could be reached to save a 162-game season. Yesterday had a push of activity to get us to a point where a deal could happen today. However, negotiations finally stalled and came to an end for the day. Right after that, commissioner Rob Manfred officially announced the cancellation of a second week of baseball games.

Entering today, the main point that was causing issues between the two sides was the qualifying offer and the addition of an international draft. The two sides had started coming together on several issues, but these two issues were still causing the main problems. At the end of the day, MLB gave the union three options: Drop the qualifying offer but add an international draft, no international draft and continued qualifying offer, or drop the qualifying offer and look into an international draft, but can re-open CBA negotiations in two years. The players did not agree to any and issued a counter, to drop the qualifying offer this season and if an international draft can’t be agreed on by November 15, return to the status quo. MLB rejected this, and then released the announcement almost immediately after.

For the Brewers, this will cancel their first road trip of the season. That was scheduled to be at the Cubs and then at the Orioles. The new earliest start would be April 14, which would be a home series against the Cardinals.

With another two weeks cancelled, the possibility of a full 162-game season is pretty much done. That will add more complications to the negotiations, as now service time and pay for the season will come into play. The players want a full season of pay and service time no matter when the season starts, while the owners will look to reduce those since a full season will not be played.

Here is the official statement from MLB: