MLB Discussing a Start Date for the 2020 Season
When will sports return? Which sport will be the first to return? Questions we do not know the answer to but on Tuesday Major League Baseball seems to be putting a plan in place to get the ball rolling again, pun intended.
According to an article from USA Today's Bob Nightengale the powers that be in the MLB are thinking that a return to baseball could happen in late June or early July. The goal would be to play at least 100 games during a shortened regular season but the question remains, how and where would this season be played?
Well, apparently according to Nightengale MLB is contemplating a 10-team plan split between three divisions in which the teams would only play other teams within their division.
These new divisions would be created based on the team's region of the country they normally play in and would do away with the American and National leagues.
Past plans that we've heard proposed would send teams either all to Arizona or split up into the Cactus and Grapefruit leagues in AZ and FL respectively. However, this newly revised plan would allow teams to play at their home parks, not force them to be in isolation from their families, and require minimum travel due to the realignment of divisions based on geography.
If you're curious as to what this 10 team, tri-division would look like here it is, again according to Bob Nightengale:
- New York Yankees and Mets, Boston Red Sox, Washington Nationals, Baltimore Orioles, Philadelphia Phillies, Pittsburgh Pirates, Toronto Blue Jays, Tampa Bay Rays, Miami Marlins
- Los Angeles Dodgers and Angels, San Francisco Giants, Oakland Athletics, San Diego Padres, Arizona Diamondbacks, Colorado Rockies, Texas Rangers, Houston Astros, Seattle Mariners
- Chicago Cubs and Chicago White Sox, Milwaukee Brewers, St. Louis Cardinals, Kansas City Royals, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, Minnesota Twins, Atlanta Braves, Detroit Tigers
Now, I believe a plan like this could only work if we're seeing a significant downturn in COVID-19 cases, the games would certainly be played without fans but at least it would give us baseball back.
There's also a thought that for spring training you would start everyone where they would normally go for it to either FL or AZ. Then, if things aren't as clear coronavirus wise as the league would like it maybe they could begin the season by playing in strictly AZ, FL, and TX.
There are certainly a lot of question marks but it's nice to hear that the powers that be are trying to put a plan in place to be ready when it's safe to do so.