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Waiting on the World Baseball Classic

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2021 WBC could be pushed to 2023

2021 World Baseball Classic Qualifier Cancelled Due to Coronavirus and Brazil Team Returns Home Photo by Carol Coelho/Getty Images

It sounds like we’ll have to wait a while for the next World Baseball Classic. The 16-team international tournament, originally scheduled for March 2021, will be canceled, per Enrique Rojas of ESPN.

The WBC might be next played in 2023, though there is a procedural hurdle pointed out by Rojas:

Because the event was included in the current collective bargaining agreement, which runs through December 2021, the tournament would have to be renegotiated to feature MLB participation, sources said.

The U.S. won last World Baseball Classic, in 2017, beating Puerto Rico in the final at Dodger Stadium. The semifinals and final round of the 2021 WBC was scheduled for Marlins Park in Miami, with pool play taking place in Miami, Chase Field in Arizona, Taiwan, and Tokyo.

All 16 teams from the 2017 WBC were eligible to return in 2021, with an expanded field to 20 teams.

A qualifying tournament was set for this March in Tucson, that would have whittled down 12 teams to the final four spots in the 2021 WBC, was postponed indefinitely on March 12 when Major League Baseball officially postponed the beginning of the 2020 MLB regular season.

Links

We talked yesterday about the financial aspects of MLB owners’ proposal to the players for restarting the 2020 season. Ronald Blum at the Associated Press has some more details on the specifics, including active rosters expanding from 26 to 30, plus designated hitter in the National League.

Another, extremely important, aspect of the MLB proposal to open the season, is getting the go-ahead from states to play the games. Bill Shaikin at the LA Times spoke with California Governor Gavin Newsom:

Under current California guidelines, even the 100 or so people needed to stage a fan-free game would constitute a gathering beyond the current limits. Newsom said he had spoken with MLB commissioner Rob Manfred and said the league promised it would not take any action in violation of state guidelines.

“We’ll see where we will be in July,” Newsom said.

Eric Longenhagen at FanGraphs unveiled his top 47 Dodgers prospects, led by Gavin Lux and Dustin May.

The Dodgers traded pitcher Rick Honeycutt to the A’s in 1987 for a player to be named later. Ken Gurnick of MLB.com made the case that the player, named a week later, is the best PTNBL in franchise history.

Baseball-Reference made some additions to Mookie Betts’ player page:

Memes didn’t exist in 1963, but with Monday’s anniversary of Sandy Koufax’s second no-hitter, this picture is just begging to be photoshopped.