The Public Regulation of Baseball Labor Relations and the Public Interest
Roger Ian Abrams
Northeastern University - School of Law
Journal of Sports Economics, Vol. 4 No. 4, November 2003, pp. 292-301
Northeastern University School of Law Research Paper
This essay discusses the limited role played by the law in the regulation of baseball labor relations. What is termed the legal architecture of the baseball business is a superstructure of federal labor statutes that supported unionization to thereby facilitate the efforts of the Players Association to achieve the aspirations of the players. Protection of the public interest in baseball is primarily the obligation of the marketplace and of collective bargaining. In one instance, however, the law played a direct and immediate role in support of the public's interest in the continuity of baseball entertainment. The 1994 strike that almost ended the national pastime is described. A federal district court judge, however, at the behest of the National Labor Relations Board, saved baseball from itself. Whether the public interest has been served by this system of regulation is assessed, and it is concluded that the picture is mixed and the ultimate outcome remains uncertain.
Keywords: public interest, baseball labor relations, 1994 strike, collective bargainingAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: April 29, 2012
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