The MLB lockout, the league's first work stoppage in 26 years, began early Thursday morning as the CBA expired with no new deal in place. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred released a letter to fans explaining the state of affairs, though the letter contained some barbs directed at the MLBPA, who responded in turn with some criticisms of their own.

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MLB commissioner Rob Manfred is not-so-subtly explaining to baseball fans why the lockout was necessary because of the actions of the players and the MLBPA while basically pledging his full support for the owners. For someone who desires compromise, a strongly worded letter bashing the MLBPA is probably not a great start from the leader of the sport.

And the MLBPA didn't hesitate in responding to Manfred.

“Fair to all parties” means mostly fair to the players, whose main gripe, among others, seems to be with how clubs and MLB owners can use the minor league service time rules to their advantage so as not to pay players large contracts. Is that fair to the players?

Maybe not, but one can bet that public perception of the MLBPA and players likely won't be great after over a billion dollars were doled out to free agents during the early portion of the MLB offseason, as pointed out by Manfred.

Regardless of who is right, both the MLBPA, Rob Manfred and the owners are coming out swinging in a lockout that doesn't seem near a compromise at the moment.

MLB fans just hope that it doesn't threaten the start of the season.