A lockout doesn’t just mean there can be no MLB transactions, it means the league and union members don’t have an official relationship at all beyond the bargaining table. As such, any actual news on MLB.com has been completely scrubbed and replaced by Rob Manfred’s condescending “letter to baseball fans” as the lead story, with notes about the lockout and several nostalgia pieces filling the remaining space.
Even the video page is barren, though I will point out that watching the piece about the legendary Buck O’Neil’s Hall of Fame candidacy deserves top billing.
A visit to any team’s MLB.com page reveals more of the same, with only the header colors and the apparel in the ads differentiating them.
This doesn’t come as a surprise, but it’s disappointing nonetheless because the changes all happened at 12:01am on Thursday. The league already had this “new” content ready to go and just flipped a switch. As a content creator, my concern is more about the unceremonious removal of all the hard work by people like Jordan Bastian and his colleagues with other teams.
Beat writers for other outlets still have their work available for consumption and can research and publish new pieces even if there’s much less to write about. At the same time, I suppose there may be an upside to being forced into an impromptu vacation now and then. It would just be nice if MLB.com didn’t look (a lot more) like a state-run newspaper.