As of today, nobody knows exactly when or if the major-league baseball season will resume. However, we could potentially have our answer sometime soon, as the MLB and the MLBPA will begin the process of planning the 2020 season this week.
There will be a conference call with owners today. If the owners give their approval, the league will present its proposal to the players’ union on Tuesday, according to Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.
If the season were to resume, any plan would require sign-off from medical experts and confidence that testing for the virus would be sufficiently available. In Rosenthal’s article, these are some options as to what the MLB could potentially do.
• A regular season beginning in early July and consisting of approximately 80 games. The number might not be exactly 80 — 78 and 82 are also possibilities.
The schedule would be regionalized: Teams would face opponents only from their own division and the same geographic division in the opposite league. An NL East club, for example, would face teams only from the NL East and AL East.
• Teams would open in as many home parks as possible, with even New York — the major-league city hardest hit by the coronavirus — potentially in play by early July.
• Expanded playoffs similar to the idea first reported by the New York Post in February, with an increase from five to seven teams in each league.
Under this plan, the team with the best record in each league would receive a bye in the wild-card round and advance to the Division Series. The two other division winners and wild card with the best record would face the bottom three wild cards in a best-of-three wild-card round.
- An expanded roster of as many as 45 to 50 players is expected.
- The DH will be used in both leagues in order to spare pitchers from additional fatigue and wear and tear.
There’s no question that baseball will be different in 2020. However, if the MLB needs to make drastic changes in order for the season to begin, so be it!
- Under 1% of Major League Baseball employees test positive for coronavirus antibodies. Just 0.7% of Major League Baseball employees tested positive for antibodies to COVID-19, the illness caused by the new coronavirus. Results were based about about 5,600 completed records from employees of 26 clubs. Samples were obtained on April 14 and 15.
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