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                                                       Calendar No. 231
105th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE

 1st Session                                                    105-118
_______________________________________________________________________


 
                         CURT FLOOD ACT OF 1997

                                _______
                                

                October 29, 1997.--Ordered to be printed

_______________________________________________________________________


Mr. Hatch, from the Committee on the Judiciary, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                             MINORITY VIEWS

                          [To accompany S. 53]

    The Committee on the Judiciary, to which was referred the 
bill (S. 53) to require the general application of the 
antitrust laws to major league baseball, and for other 
purposes, having considered the same and amendments thereto, 
reports favorably thereon, with an amendment in the nature of a 
substitute, and recommends that the bill, as amended, do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
  I. Purpose..........................................................2
 II. Legislative history..............................................3
III. Vote of the Committee............................................5
 IV. Section-by-section analysis......................................5
  V. Cost estimate....................................................6
 VI. Regulatory impact statement......................................8
VII. Minority views of Senators Grassley, Biden, Feinstein, and Durbin9
VIII.Changes in existing law.........................................11


    The amendment is as follows:
    Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Curt Flood Act of 1997''.

SEC. 2. PURPOSE.

  It is the purpose of this legislation to clarify that major league 
baseball players are covered under the antitrust laws (i.e., that major 
league players will have the same rights under the antitrust laws as do 
other professional athletes, e.g., football and basketball players), 
along with a provision that makes it clear that the passage of this Act 
does not change the application of the antitrust laws in any other 
context or with respect to any other person or entity.

SEC. 3. APPLICATION OF THE ANTITRUST LAWS TO PROFESSIONAL MAJOR LEAGUE 
                    BASEBALL.

  The Clayton Act (15 U.S.C. 12 et seq.) is amended by adding at the 
end the following new section:
  ``Sec. 27. (a) The conduct, acts, practices, or agreements of persons 
in the business of organized professional major league baseball 
relating to or affecting employment to play baseball at the major 
league level are subject to the antitrust laws to the same extent such 
conduct, acts, practices, or agreements would be subject to the 
antitrust laws if engaged in by persons in any other professional 
sports business affecting interstate commerce; provided, however, that 
nothing in this subsection shall be construed as providing the basis 
for any negative inference regarding the caselaw concerning the 
applicability of the antitrust laws to minor league baseball.
  ``(b) Nothing contained in subsection (a) of this section shall be 
deemed to change the application of the antitrust laws to the conduct, 
acts, practices, or agreements by, between, or among persons engaging 
in, conducting, or participating in the business of organized 
professional baseball, except the conduct, acts, practices, or 
agreements to which subsection (a) of this section shall apply. More 
specifically, but not by way of limitation, this section shall not be 
deemed to change the application of the antitrust laws to:
          ``(1) the organized professional baseball amateur draft, the 
        reserve clause as applied to minor league players, the 
        agreement between organized professional major league baseball 
        teams and the teams of the National Association of Professional 
        Baseball Leagues, commonly known as the `Professional Baseball 
        Agreement', the relationship between organized professional 
        major league baseball and organized professional minor league 
        baseball, or any other matter relating to professional 
        organized baseball's minor leagues;
          ``(2) any conduct, acts, practices, or agreements of persons 
        in the business of organized professional baseball relating to 
        franchise expansion, location or relocation, franchise 
        ownership issues, including ownership transfers, and the 
        relationship between the Office of the Commissioner and 
        franchise owners;
          ``(3) any conduct, acts, practices, or agreements protected 
        by Public Law 87-331 (15 U.S.C. 1291 et seq.) (commonly known 
        as the `Sports Broadcasting Act of 1961'); or
          ``(4) the relationship between persons in the business of 
        organized professional baseball and umpires or other 
        individuals who are employed in the business of organized 
        professional baseball by such persons.
  ``(c) As used in this section, `persons' means any individual, 
partnership, corporation, or unincorporated association or any 
combination or association thereof.''.

                               I. PURPOSE

    The purpose of S. 53 is to clarify that major league 
baseball players and owners have the same legal rights, and are 
subject to the same restrictions, under the antitrust laws as 
the players and owners in other professional sports leagues. As 
the bill expressly provides, it is not intended to affect the 
applicability or inapplicability of the antitrust laws in any 
other manner or context.
    As set forth in the S. Rept. 104-231, accompanying S. 627, 
the ``Major League Baseball Antitrust Reform Act of 1995,'' a 
bill that was reported out of the Judiciary Committee but not 
enacted during the 104th Congress, the unfortunate baseball 
strike of 1994-95 reemphasized the need for Congress to clarify 
its intent to apply to professional baseball the same rules of 
fair and open competition that are followed by all other 
unregulated business enterprises in this country, including 
other sports leagues. In short, other professional athletes and 
similarly situated employees have alternatives to striking 
specifically because of the antitrust laws.\1\ It is the 
Committee's belief that the applicability of the antitrust laws 
to major league baseball player-owner employment relations will 
significantly reduce the likelihood of future baseball strikes.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\ As described in S. Rept. 104-231, the courts have developed a 
``nonstatutory'' labor exemption from the antitrust laws. See, e.g., 
Brown v. Pro Football, Inc., 116 S.Ct. 2116 (1996). Although courts and 
academics have disagreed on the precise extent and scope of this 
exemption, it is clear that, at some point, the nonstatutory labor 
exemption ends and employees have a right to invoke the antitrust laws. 
Like its predecessor S. 627, S. 53 is intended to clarify the 
applicability of the antitrust laws in those contexts where the 
nonstatutory labor exemption does not apply, and is not intended to 
affect the scope or extent of that exemption.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

                        II. LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

                        A. Introduction of S. 53

    Many bills have been introduced over the decades addressing 
the subject of baseball's antitrust exemption. During the 104th 
Congress, this Committee reported out S. 627, a bill intended 
to affirm that major league baseball's owners and players were 
subject to the Nation's antitrust laws. This bill, however, was 
not considered by the full Senate during the 104th Congress.
    On January 21, 1997, Senators Hatch, Leahy, Thurmond, and 
Moynihan introduced S. 53, the Curt Flood Act of 1997, which 
was virtually identical to S. 627 from the 104th Congress. On 
June 17, 1997, this Committee held a hearing on S. 53. The 
witnesses were Donald A. Fehr, executive director of the Major 
League Baseball Players Association, and Dan Peltier, a former 
minor league baseball player. Mr. Allan H. Selig, chairman of 
the Major League Executive Council, and Mr. Stanley Brand, vice 
president of the National Association of Professional Baseball 
Leagues, Inc., were also invited to testify at the hearing, but 
did not attend.

             B. The Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute

 1. The Agreement Between Major League Baseball Owners and Players to 
                       Seek Antitrust Legislation

    The 1990 collective-bargaining agreement between the major 
league baseball players union and major league owners (``Basic 
Agreement'') expired in December 1993, subsequent to which the 
industry, and the Nation, suffered through the unfortunate 
strike that suspended portions of the 1994 and 1995 seasons, 
including the 1994 World Series. After protracted negotiations, 
a new Basic Agreement was finally signed in March 1997. As part 
of this new agreement, the owners and players reached what was 
described by both sides as a landmark pact regarding the 
applicability of the antitrust laws to major league baseball. 
The parties memorialized this agreement in article XXVIII of 
the Basic Agreement, which reads in pertinent part as follows:

          The Clubs and the Association will jointly request 
        and cooperate in lobbying the Congress to pass a law 
        that will clarify that Major League Baseball players 
        are covered under the antitrust laws (i.e. that Major 
        League Players have the same rights under the antitrust 
        laws as do other professional athletes, e.g. football 
        and basketball players), along with a provision that 
        makes it clear that passage of that bill does not 
        change the application of the antitrust laws in any 
        other context or with respect to any other person or 
        entity.

             2. The Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute

    The sponsors of S. 53 continue to support it as introduced. 
After introduction, however, the owners and players reached the 
above-referenced agreement regarding the applicability of the 
antitrust laws to major league baseball. Senators Hatch and 
Leahy subsequently made clear their willingness to substitute 
language designed to implement the intent of the owners' and 
players' agreement, believing that a bill which enjoyed both 
the owners' and players' support would be passed expeditiously.
    After considerable prodding from Senator Hatch, on June 12, 
1997, the owners ratified specific legislative language, 
earlier agreed to by representatives of the owners and the 
players, intended to clarify that major league baseball players 
have the same rights under the antitrust laws as other 
professional athletes. This language provided the basis for the 
amendment in the nature of a substitute to S. 53, offered by 
Senator Hatch at the Committee's Executive Business Meeting on 
July 31, 1997.

           C. The Minor Leagues and Senator Hatch's Amendment

    The Committee has consistently sought not to adversely 
affect the legal status of theminor leagues or minor league 
players. Thus, S. 53 (much like its predecessor, S. 627) expressly 
states that:

          Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect 
        * * * the applicability or nonapplicability of the 
        antitrust laws to the amateur draft of professional 
        baseball, the minor league reserve clause, the 
        agreement between professional major league baseball 
        teams and teams of the National Association of 
        Baseball, commonly known as the ``Professional Baseball 
        Agreement'', or any other matter relating to the minor 
        leagues.

    Notwithstanding this relatively clear language, Mr. Stanley 
Brand indicated to the Committee that he still had concerns. As 
a consequence, Mr. Selig stated in a June 16, 1997, letter to 
the Chairman that, although the owners' Executive Council had 
formally approved the legislative language which ultimately 
became the amendment in the nature of a substitute to S. 53, 
their ``support was tempered by the fact that our business 
partner, the National Association of Professional Baseball 
Leagues (NAPBL) has concern as to whether the proposed 
legislation adequately protects their interests.''
    Responding to this concern, when the amendment in the 
nature of a substitute to S. 53 was marked up at the 
Committee's July 31, 1997, Executive Business Meeting, Senator 
Hatch offered an amendment intended to clarify even further 
that S. 53 would have no impact on the legal status of the 
minor leagues. This amendment stated that ``nothing in this 
subsection shall be construed as providing the basis for any 
negative inference regarding the caselaw concerning the 
applicability of the antitrust laws to minor league baseball,'' 
and was incorporated by voice vote.

                       III. VOTE OF THE COMMITTEE

    On July 31, 1997, with a quorum present, the Committee on 
the Judiciary ordered S. 53 favorably reported by a vote of 11 
yeas to 6 nays, with Senator Kohl having recused himself. In 
compliance with paragraph 7 of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules 
of the Senate, the members of the Committee voted as follows on 
S. 53:
        YEAS                          NAYS
Hatch                               Grassley
Thurmond                            Sessions
Specter (proxy)                     Biden
Thompson (proxy)                    Feinstein
Kyl (proxy)                         Durbin
DeWine                              Torricelli
Ashcroft (proxy)
Abraham
Leahy
Kennedy
Feingold

    Senator Hatch, together with Senator Leahy, offered a 
substitute amendment to reflect the agreement that had been 
reached between major league baseball owners and players. This 
amendment was agreed to by unanimous consent.
    Senator Hatch offered an amendment to the substitute, to 
further clarify that this bill shall not be construed to affect 
the applicability of the antitrust laws to minor league 
baseball. The amendment was agreed to by voice vote, with 
Senators Biden and Feinstein noted as having voted nay.

                    IV. SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

    Section 1 states the bill's short title, the ``Curt Flood 
Act of 1997.''
    Section 2 states that the bill's purpose is to clarify that 
major league professional baseball players have the same rights 
under the antitrust laws as do other professional athletes.
    Section 3 amends the Clayton Act to add a new section 27. 
New subsection 27(a) states that the antitrust laws apply to 
actions relating to professional baseball players' employment 
to play baseball at the major league level. Reflecting the 
Committee's interest in reporting a bill enjoying the support 
of both the owners and players, subsection 27(a) implements the 
owners' and players' agreement that major league baseball 
players have the same rights under the antitrust laws as, for 
example, do professional football and basketball players. The 
phrase ``the antitrust laws shall apply'' is intended to 
incorporate the entire jurisprudence of the antitrust laws, as 
it now exists and as it may develop. Subsection 27(a) also 
specifies that nothing within the subsection provides a basis 
for any negative inference regarding the caselaw concerning the 
applicability of the antitrust laws to minor league baseball.
    S. 53 was specifically drafted so that it would not 
implicate issues or actions other than those specified in 
subsection 27(a). Thus, subsection 27(b) makes explicit the 
Committee's intent that the passage of this bill does not 
affect the applicability or nonapplicability of the antitrust 
laws in any other context beyond that specified in subsection 
27(a). With regard to contexts, actions or issues outside the 
scope of subsection 27(a) (that is, not constituting ``conduct, 
acts, practices, or agreements of persons in the business of 
organized professional major league baseball relating to or 
affecting employment to play baseball at the major league 
level''), the law as it exists today is not changed by this 
bill. The specific areas listed in the four subparts of new 
subsection 27(b) are intended to be merely illustrative of the 
areas and/or issues as to which the law remains unchanged by 
this bill. The specific reference to the minor leagues in 
subsection 27(a) is only intended to clarify that the passage 
of the bill will have no impact on the law, or the future 
development of the law, governing the applicability of the 
antitrust laws to the minor leagues. This reference is not 
intended to provide any inference or limitation regarding the 
scope of other issues and/or areas as to which the law remains 
unchanged by this bill.

                            V. COST ESTIMATE

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                Washington, DC, September 23, 1997.
Hon. Orrin G. Hatch,
Chairman, Committee on the Judiciary,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for S. 53, the Curt Flood 
Act of 1997.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
please to provide them. The CBO staff contacts are Susanne S. 
Mehlman (for federal costs) and Matt Eyles (for the private-
sector impact).
            Sincerely,
                                         June E. O'Neill, Director.
    Enclosure.

               Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

   S. 53--Curt Flood Act of 1997; As ordered reported by the Senate 
              Committee on the Judiciary on July 31, 1997

    S. 53 would remove major league baseball's current 
exemption from antitrust laws, except that it would retain the 
antitrust exemption for minor league baseball and for decisions 
regarding league expansion, franchise location, the amateur 
draft and broadcast rights, and employment relations with 
nonplayers, such as umpires. By removing the antitrust 
exemption under these limited circumstances, S. 53 would allow 
the players to challenge in federal court certain conduct by 
the team owners. Therefore, enacting S. 53 would impose 
additional costs on the U.S. court system to the extent that 
additional antitrust cases are filed. However, CBO does not 
expect any resulting increase in case load or court costs to be 
significant.
    Because enactment of S. 53 would not affect direct spending 
or receipts, pay-as-you-go procedures would not apply to the 
bill. S. 53 contains no intergovernment mandates as defined in 
the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) and would 
impose no costs on state, local, or tribal governments.
    S. 53 would impose a new private-sector mandate as defined 
in UMRA by applying the antitrust laws to the conduct of owners 
of major league baseball teams in employment relations with 
major league players. As a result, the owners would be 
prohibited from engaging in anticompetitive employment-related 
activities that are now permissible under their judicially-
created exemption from the antitrust laws. Thus, if enacted, S. 
53 would place owners of major league baseball teams in the 
same position as owners in the other major professional sports 
leagues by making their actions subject to judicial review. In 
most lawsuits alleging an antitrust violation, federal courts 
would review the conduct of owners under the ``rule of reason'' 
standard and examine the economic consequences of the action 
for its procompetitive and anticompetitive effects. Some 
conduct, such as collusion, would be per se violations of 
antitrust law. Owners found to be in violation would be subject 
to treble monetary damages.
    If enacted, S. 53 would represent an explicit reversal by 
the Congress of a portion of baseball's 75-year-old exemption 
from the antitrust laws created by the Supreme Court's decision 
in Federal Baseball Club, Inc. v. National League of 
Professional Baseball Clubs, 259 U.S. 200 (1922). In that case, 
the Court determined that baseball was not a business involved 
in interstate commerce and, therefore, was not subject to the 
antitrust laws, which prohibit anticompetitive behavior and 
unreasonable restraint of trade. In subsequent legal challenges 
to the ruling in Federal Baseball, the most noteworthy being 
Flood v. Kuhn, 407 U.S. 258 (1972), the Supreme Court 
acknowledged that its 1922 decision was flawed, yet it declined 
to overturn baseball's antitrust exemption on the grounds that 
this anomaly should be rectified by the Congress. Thus, the 
bill would impose a new legislatively-crafted enforceable duty 
on the business of baseball, which fits the definition of a 
private-sector mandate in UMRA.
    CBO estimates that the direct cost, as defined in UMRA, of 
the private-sector mandate in S. 53 would not likely exceed the 
$100 million statutory threshold. Direct costs would be imposed 
on owners to the extent that they would have to employ counsel 
to defend their actions against antitrust suits from which they 
are now immune. Moreover, baseball operates under a collective 
bargaining agreement that runs through the 2000 season, and 
players have the option to extend the current agreement through 
the 2001 season. Under that agreement players have recourse 
against owners who engage in collusion on the terms of player 
contracts and can recover treble damages through a process of 
binding arbitration. Consequently, S. 53 would probably impose 
no direct costs from 1998 through 2000 or 2001 because no 
antitrust suits would be initiated while the collective 
bargaining agreement is in effect. Costs in subsequent years 
are not likely to exceed the $100 million statutory threshold. 
CBO does not count possible monetary damages that may be 
assessed against owners for antitrust infractions a cost of 
complying with a private-sector mandate because CBO assumes 
that owners would comply with the law's prohibition against 
anticompetitive behavior.
    The CBO staff contacts for this estimate are Susanne S. 
Mehlman (for federal costs) and Matt Eyles (for the private-
sector impact). This estimate was approved by Robert A. 
Sunshine, Deputy Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                    VI. REGULATORY IMPACT STATEMENT

    In compliance with paragraph 11(b) of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee concluded that no 
significant additional regulatory impact or impact on personal 
privacy would be incurred in carrying out the provisions of 
this legislation. After due consideration, the Committee 
concluded that enactment of the Act would not create any 
significant additional paperwork.

 VII. MINORITY VIEWS OF SENATORS GRASSLEY, BIDEN, FEINSTEIN, AND DURBIN

    We oppose passage of this legislation for a number of 
reasons. We advocate a comprehensive approach, from the fans' 
perspective, to examining the problems in professional 
baseball. Most of these problems would exist regardless of 
antitrust liability. Indeed, in attempting to solve baseball's 
labor relations difficulties by modifying the antitrust laws, 
we run too great a risk of creating more problems than we 
solve.
    Unfortunately, as reported by this Committee, S. 53, ``The 
Curt Flood Act of 1997,'' takes the potentially 
counterproductive step of engaging in a piecemeal approach to 
the issues confronting baseball by addressing only the 
application of the antitrust laws to major league baseball 
labor relations. What is more, it is far from clear that S. 53 
even adequately addresses the labor relations issue. Under 
current law, major league owners can unilaterally impose new 
labor conditions on players following the expiration of a 
collective-bargaining agreement. Players then have two choices: 
(1) accept the unilateral terms and ``play ball'' or (2) go on 
strike. This bill is designed to give the players a third 
option. It would allow players to sue the owners under the 
antitrust laws for unilaterally imposing collusive and unfair 
labor conditions. We support the goal of encouraging the owners 
and the players to resolve their differences at the bargaining 
table prior to Opening Day. But, it is far from clear that S. 
53 will generate the promised benefit of strengthening the 
players' hand and reducing the likelihood of future strikes. 
For one thing, the bill says nothing about the nonstatutory 
labor exemption, which removes union members engaged in 
collective bargaining from the reach of applicable antitrust 
laws. In other words, if S. 53 became law in its current form, 
the players may not be able to sue without decertifying their 
union.
    We also believe that the ability of the players to sue the 
owners is not the only issue in professional sports today. 
Other important issues include league expansion and franchise 
movement, taxpayer-financed stadiums, revenue sharing, player 
salaries, and fan access to television coverage. Despite the 
Committee's efforts, we have not addressed these issues, other 
than to say that this legislation will not affect the current 
system in these areas. This legislation continues to leave fans 
vulnerable to major league franchise relocations and 
broadcasting decisions. In short, S. 53 in our view attempts a 
simple fix to a complex problem and risks further alienating 
the fans and irreparably harming the national pastime.
    We are particularly concerned about the consequences of 
this bill for minor league baseball. The minor leagues 
legitimately fear that if S. 53 becomes law without being 
modified to protect them, the major league teams will 
discontinue their financing of the minor leagues and look for 
an alternative to the minors for developing players. Minor 
league teams in our home States promote community-based and 
affordable events for citizens who for financial or geographic 
reasons cannot attend major league games. Destruction of minor 
league baseball, the sport for the fans in towns and small 
cities across America, cannot be the effect of any bill we 
pass.
    The proponents of this legislation argue that the current 
language adequately protects the minor leagues. The limited 
evidence before the Committee does not support their argument. 
At a February 15, 1995, Antitrust Subcommittee hearing, the 
former Assistant Attorney General for the Antitrust Division of 
the United States Department of Justice, James F. Rill, 
testifying on behalf of the owners, expressed the minor 
leagues' fears that removal of the antitrust exemption, even on 
a limited basis, threatens to end the major league funding upon 
which the minor leagues' viability depends. The reason is 
clear: the majors pay 100 percent of the salaries of all minor 
league players, managers, coaches, and trainers--and supply 
five dozen baseballs per game--in return for the prospect of 
major league talent someday down the line. Without the ability 
to reserve their players, major league teams will no longer 
have assurance that they can realize their investment in minor 
league players. Moreover, the current major and minor league 
systems are inextricably intertwined. Attempting to address the 
major league separately in this bill may lead to extensive 
litigation and ultimately prove unworkable.
    This Committee needs to understand the relationship between 
minor league baseball and major league baseball's antitrust 
exemption more fully before we pass this bill. Left unresolved, 
this issue may generate more litigation, more lawyers' fees, 
and more uncertainty than we already have today. We hope that 
future consideration of this issue will explore more fully the 
intended and unintended consequences of congressional action in 
this area. And, most important, we urge our colleagues to focus 
on how repeal of the antitrust exemption for major league 
baseball would affect fans of both the minor and the major 
leagues.

                                   Chuck Grassley.
                                   Joe Biden.
                                   Dianne Feinstein.
                                   Dick Durbin.

                     VIII. CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    In compliance with paragraph 12 of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, changes in existing law made by 
S. 53, as reported, are shown as follows (existing law which 
would be omitted is enclosed in bold brackets, new matter is 
printed in italic, and existing law in which no change is 
proposed is shown in roman type):

                           UNITED STATES CODE

          * * * * * * *

                      TITLE 15--COMMERCE AND TRADE

          * * * * * * *

      CHAPTER 1--MONOPOLIES AND COMBINATIONS IN RESTRAINT OF TRADE

          * * * * * * *

Sec. 1. Trusts, etc., in restraint of trade illegal; penalty

    Every contract, combination in the form of trust or 
otherwise, or conspiracy, in restraint of trade or commerce 
among the several States, or with foreign nations, is hereby 
declared to be illegal. Every person who shall make any 
contract or engage in any combination or conspiracy hereby 
declared to be illegal shall be deemed guilty of a felony, and, 
on conviction thereof, shall be punished by fine not exceeding 
$10,000,000 if a corporation, or, if any other person, 
$350,000, or by imprisonment not exceeding three years, or by 
both said punishments, in the discretion of the court.
          * * * * * * *

Sec. 12. Definitions; short title

    (a) ``Antitrust laws,'' as used herein, includes the Act 
entitled ``An Act to protect trade and commerce against 
unlawful restraints and monopolies,'' approved July second, 
eighteen hundred and ninety; sections seventy-three to seventy-
seven, inclusive, of an Act entitled ``An Act to reduce 
taxation, to provide revenue for the Government, and for other 
purposes,'' of August twenty-seventh, eighteen hundred and 
ninety-four; an Act entitled ``An Act to amend sections 
seventy-three and seventy-six of the Act of August twenty-
seventh, eighteen hundred and ninety-four, entitled `An Act to 
reduce taxation, to provide revenue for the Government, and for 
other purposes,' '' approved February twelfth, nineteen hundred 
and thirteen; and also this Act.
          * * * * * * *
    Sec. 27. (a) The conduct, acts, practices, or agreements of 
persons in the business of organized professional major league 
baseball relating to or affecting employment to play baseball 
at the major league level are subject to the antitrust laws to 
the same extent such conduct, acts, practices, or agreements 
would be subject to the antitrust laws if engaged in by persons 
in any other professional sports business affecting interstate 
commerce; provided, however, that nothing in this subsection 
shall be construed as providing the basis for any negative 
inference regarding the caselaw concerning the applicability of 
the antitrust laws to minor league baseball.
    (b) Nothing contained in subsection (a) of this section 
shall be deemed to change the application of the antitrust laws 
to the conduct, acts, practices, or agreements by, between, or 
among persons engaging in, conducting, or participating in the 
business of organized professional baseball, except the 
conduct, acts, practices, or agreements to which subsection (a) 
of this section shall apply. More specifically, but not by way 
of limitation, this section shall not be deemed to change the 
application of the antitrust laws to:
          (1) the organized professional baseball amateur 
        draft, the reserve clause as applied to minor league 
        players, the agreement between organized professional 
        major league baseball teams and the teams of the 
        National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues, 
        commonly known as the ``Professional Baseball 
        Agreement'', the relationship between organized 
        professional major league baseball and organized 
        professional minor league baseball, or any other matter 
        relating to professional organized baseball's minor 
        leagues;
          (2) any conduct, acts, practices, or agreements of 
        persons in the business of organized professional 
        baseball relating to franchise expansion, location or 
        relocation, franchise ownership issues, including 
        ownership transfers, and the relationship between the 
        Office of the Commissioner and franchise owners;
          (3) any conduct, acts, practices, or agreements 
        protected by Public Law 87-331 (15 U.S.C. 1291 et seq.) 
        (commonly known as the ``Sports Broadcasting Act of 
        1961''); or
          (4) the relationship between persons in the business 
        of organized professional baseball and umpires or other 
        individuals who are employed in the business of 
        organized professional baseball by such persons.
  (c) As used in this section, ``persons'' means any 
individual, partnership, corporation, or unincorporated 
association or any combination or association thereof.