Major League Baseball (MLB) today announced that the 30 Clubs have ratified a new, two-year player transfer agreement with the Liga Mexicana de Beisbol (LMB) – the first such agreement ever reached between MLB and the LMB. The Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) has also approved the new agreement with the LMB. This agreement follows other recent protocol agreements between MLB and other baseball leagues around the world, including the NPB (Japan), KBO (Korea), CPBL (Taiwan), and FCB (Cuba).
Under the new agreement with the LMB, all players who are under contract to an LMB club will be eligible to sign with any MLB Club the off-season after the player qualifies as a “Foreign Professional” under MLB’s collective bargaining agreement with the MLBPA (i.e., at least 25 years old and six or more years of professional baseball experience abroad). LMB clubs may also release players to sign with MLB Clubs before they reach Foreign Professional status. An MLB Club that signs a player who is released by his LMB club will owe the LMB club a one-time release fee of 15% of the total guaranteed value of the contract, if the release LMB player signs a Major League contract, or 35% of the signing bonus, if the released LMB player signs a Minor League contract.
Commissioner of Baseball Robert D. Manfred, Jr. said: “Major League Baseball is pleased to further solidify its longstanding relationship with the LMB with this agreement. Mexico is an important market for our game, as demonstrated by our three series in Monterrey in the months ahead. We look forward to the opportunities to develop more Major League players and baseball fans in the country.”
Tony Clark, Executive Director of the MLBPA, said: “Mexican players past and present have looked forward to a time when there would be a fair and transparent path to pursue their dreams of playing Major League Baseball. This agreement provides for that.”