Major League Baseball and its players' union will begin contract talks soon with none of the rancor and lockout threats that are plaguing the NFL and NBA.
“We’re on a constructive path,” commissioner Bud Selig said.
The two-day gathering, described by Selig as “a non-controversial meeting,” wrapped up at a Paradise Valley, Ariz., resort with a meeting of the special committee formed a year ago to come up with on-field changes for the game.
First on the agenda, Selig said, was the idea of expanding instant replay. The commissioner indicated he would like to proceed cautiously.
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And on the idea of expanding the playoffs by adding another wild-card team in each league, more work needs to be done, Selig said.
Any changes to the use of replays or the addition of wild-card playoff teams will not be implemented until 2012, at the earliest.
The day began with a startling development when Hall of Famer Frank Robinson, senior vice president for baseball operations in the commissioner’s office, experienced dizziness and a rapid heartbeat and was taken by ambulance to a nearby hospital. Selig said Robinson was doing well and that tests for any severe problems were negative.
Rafael Soriano, who led the AL in saves (45 for Tampa Bay), and the New York Yankees have reached agreement on a three-year contract that could be worth $35 million to the free-agent reliever, a person familiar with the talks said. The Baltimore Orioles and right-handed reliever Kevin Gregg finalized a $10 million, two-year contract.