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Major League Baseball talks resume with little to show for them

Then-Chicago Cubs' player Javier Baez sports a Major League Baseball logo tattoo and logos on his hat and jersey as he waits to take batting practice before Game 2 of the National League Division Series against the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on Oct. 7, 2017, in Washington. Baez signed a free-agent deal with the Detroit Tigers in November. (AP file photo)

NEW YORK (AP) — Baseball labor talks to end the lockout resumed Thursday for the first time in 1 1/2 months with little evident progress during a bargaining session that lasted about an hour, jeopardizing a timely start to spring training,

Major League Baseball imposed the lockout on Dec. 2 as soon as the five-year collective bargaining contract expired, a few hours after talks broke off.

The discussions Thursday were the first on core economic issues following a 42-day gap, and MLB made proposals it hoped would at least start to generate momentum.

After MLB made its proposal, the sides caucused. The players’ association then told MLB it will respond but did not commit to a specific date.

While the sides were back to bargaining, they met just five weeks before the scheduled start of spring training workouts on Feb. 16. Given the time needed for players to travel to Florida and Arizona, and then to go through COVID-19 protocols before taking the field, the prospects of a timely start are diminishing.

A deal would need to be reached by late February or early March to allow the minimum time for training ahead of the current opening day, set for March 31.

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