The MLBPA has released a statement today, denying that the MLBPA has threatened a player boycott of spring training, and saying that the MLBPA has not recommended that players boycott spring training.
This is on the heels of prominent player agent Brodie Van Wagenen openly suggesting that a spring boycott may be appropriate, in light of the lack of movement in the free agent market (and the perceived lack of good faith negotiating in free agency by MLB teams). Ken Rosenthal wrote a couple of days ago that players had raised the issue with the union on a conference call, and the union demurred, saying that it would constitute an illegal strike.
So while there’s apparently not going to be a spring training boycott, there continues to be unhappiness in the air among players regarding this offseason’s financial opportunities for players, and, as a result, unhappiness over the CBA. If teams continue to opt for austerity in free agency going forward, expect the player’s association to take a much more confrontational and hardline stance in the next round of negotiations.