AMENDED OPINION AND ORDER1
SONIA SOTOMAYOR, U.S.D.J.
This is an action brought by Petitioner, Daniel Silverman, the Regional Director for Region 2 of the National Labor Relations Board (the "Board" or "NLRB"), seeking a preliminary injunction under Section 10(j) of the National Labor Relations Act (the "Act" or "NLRA"), as amended 29 U.S.C. §§ 151-69 (1988), pending the final disposition of charges presently before the Board. Respondents in this action are the Major League Baseball Player Relations Committee, Inc. (the "PRC"), the collective bargaining representative for the twenty-eight (28) Major League Clubs (collectively the "Owners").
The Major League Baseball Players Association (the "Players") is the collective bargaining unit for the forty-person rosters of each of the Major League Clubs. On March 15, 1995, on the basis of charges filed by the Players, the Board issued a Complaint and Notice of Hearing alleging, inter alia, that the Owners had violated Sections 8(a)(1) and (5) of the Act by unilaterally eliminating, before an impasse had been reached, salary arbitration for certain reserve players, competitive bargaining for certain free agents, and the anti-collusion provision of their collective bargaining agreement, Article XX(F). After the Board concluded that there was reasonable cause to believe that a violation of the Act had occurred and that injunctive relief was just and proper, it filed this Petition on March 27, 1995. The Board, the Owners, and the Players, who were permitted to participate in this action, thereafter filed papers in support of their respective arguments.
During a telephone conference with me on March 30, 1995, all parties agreed that the only issues before the Court were questions of law and that no witnesses would be necessary at the hearing to be held on March 31, 1995. Having reviewed all of the submissions of the parties and having given them a full opportunity to be heard, I have concluded that the Board has reasonable cause to believe that the Owners have committed an unfair labor practice, and that an injunction is just and proper to avoid irreparable injury and to ensure that the Owners and Players continue bargaining, in good faith, until the resolution of their disputes, or a genuine impasse untainted by the unfair labor practices, or the determination by the NLRB of the charges before it, whichever occurs earliest.
I recognize that baseball purists will wince at my simplified explanation of the very complex relationship between the Owners and Players which has evolved since 1966 in their collectively bargained Basic Agreements. Similarly, others will be disappointed by my cursory description of the prolonged negotiations between the parties. The purpose of my recitation here, however, is only to highlight the facts giving rise to the central issues before me.
The most recent Basic Agreement between the parties extended from January 1990 through December 1993. The Agreement covered a multitude of employment terms and conditions. The pertinent provisions of the Agreement to the issues before me involve the Agreement's reserve and free agency systems. Essentially, the free agency system permits players who have completed six major-league playing seasons to set their wages with individual owner clubs. See Basic Agreement, Article XX(B), attached as Ex. D to Pet'r Mem. P. & A. Supp. Pet. Prelim. Inj. The anti-collusion provision of the Basic Agreement, Subsection F of Article XX, provides, in relevant part, that the wage process between the free agent individual player and club owner
is an individual matter to be determined solely by each Player and each Club for his or its own benefit. Players shall not act in concert with other Players and the Clubs shall not act in concert with other Clubs.