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MLB and the umpires reach a five-year labor agreement

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim vs Baltimore Orioles

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 18: Home plate umpire Laz Diaz issues a warning to both dugouts in the first inning of a baseball game between the Baltimore Orioles and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on September 18, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. The Angels beat the Orioles 11-2. (Photo by Steve Ruark/Getty Images)

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There was a time when the umpires and Major League Baseball didn’t get along that well when it came to labor stuff. Then, one day, the umpires union had the brilliant idea of mass resignations as a means of attempting to create bargaining leverage. Major League Baseball happily accepted the resignations of the umps it didn’t like but had no real power to fire, re-hired the ones they did like and went on its merry way. Since then: ump-league labor peace.

So you will not be shocked that, for the fourth time since that ill-advised gambit, the union and the league have reached a new labor deal with little muss nor fuss:

Major League Baseball owners and the World Umpires Association, the exclusive bargaining representative of all full-time Major League Umpires, have both officially ratified a five-year labor agreement, the parties announced today. The pact covers the 2015-2019 seasons.

I figure we’re two or three more cycles until institutional memory of 1999 is wiped out and someone with the umpires union gets it in their head that they have any real power in this relationship. Until then, smooth sailing.