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MLB payrolls drop 4%, back to 2015 level

Falling payrolls have sparked the labor unrest that led to the sport’s first work stoppage in more than a quarter-century this month.

NEW YORK — Major League Baseball payrolls dropped 4% in 2021 compared to the league’s last full season, and the $4.05 billion total was the lowest in a fully completed year since 2015.

Falling payrolls have sparked the labor unrest that led to the sport’s first work stoppage in more than a quarter-century this month, when the collective bargaining agreement expired and owners locked out the players Dec. 2.

Payrolls are down 4.6% from their record high of just under $4.25 billion in 2017, the first year of the just-expired CBA, according to information sent to clubs by the commissioner’s office and obtained by The Associated Press on Monday.

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