2022 is here even if baseball isn’t.

Well, next year is no longer next year. It’s this year now.

And pitchers and catchers are due to report in around 45 days, assuming mid-February. But the real start date is February 26. That’s the first Spring Training games, when the money starts. When the towns in Arizona and Florida who footed the bill for those mega-million dollar spring training complexes and are counting dearly on the tourist revenue and who have contracts with major league baseball will expect the spigot for exhibition game money to start pouring. It’s when contracts will start being violated. When money will start being lost.

That’s 55 days away.

That’s the timetable for baseball labor nonsense to end.

Then it will be a mad dash to kickstart the offseason. There will be another kind of March Madness this year. The feeding frenzy of signing all the available free agents (and there are plenty), of trading (and the Rangers have a long way to go to be respectible), and of general roster building as teams eye a short runway until the 2022 season takes off.

So, baseball fans, enjoy your upcoming 55-day nap. There’s nothing to see here, move on.

We will wake you up when it’s over.