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Report: Latest MLB Plan May Include Regional Play, Half Schedule

2020-03-04 12.56.35

Major League Baseball suspended operations on March 12, as did much of the world.  Since that day, we have heard an all-Arizona proposal for baseball to return.  Then we heard a proposal for a Florida and Arizona plan, followed by one with Texas.  But yet another proposal came to light on Saturday: teams playing their own division and opposite division in 2020.

Ken Rosenthal of the Athletic reported on Saturday evening that Major League Baseball officials will meet on Monday to discuss a new potential plan, which is different than all of the other rumored options.

According to Rosenthal, the 2020 season would include the following:

  • A season about half of the normal games, somewhere between 78-82 regular season games
  • Teams would play their division as well as the opposite division (such as the NL East and AL East playing one another)
  • Playoffs would include seven teams from each league
  • Expanded rosters as many as 45 or 50 players

But there will be challenges to make this work.

According to Rosenthal, some of the remaining issues include:

  • Travel. The Toronto Blue Jays, for example, might have to play elsewhere due to travel between the United States and Canada being restricted
  • Safety. Should a heavily-populated city such as New York be too risky, teams could play either at Spring Training sites or elsewhere
  • Compensation.  Players agreed to take salaries equal to a pro-rated levels, but that was before the idea of playing in front of empty stadiums became a thought

When Spring Training was suspended, the Phillies left their lockers intact, minus a bat or glove they might have wished to work out with during the suspension of play.  Other reports have called for a "Spring Training 2" before play resumes.  But can MLB and the MLB Players Association work out the compensation issue?  That might be the toughest issue.  

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