MLB: Biggest Problem With All Games in Arizona

Of course it's infectious to think about the baseball season starting sooner rather than later. But there is one giant problem with baseball's plan.

Jack Suhadolnik
New York Yankees
May 19, 2018; Kansas City, MO, USA; A general view of Kauffman Stadium during a game between the Kansas City Royals and the New York Yankees. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken/USA TODAY Sports

MLB is hopeful that they will be able to start the 2020 season as early as next month. Now, for a lot of us, this is more than welcome news. We love baseball and miss it. Just like we love and miss all the other sports that have been canceled. So while it’s great to be hopeful about this plan, there’s one GIANT problem.

Most COVID-19 Cases in Arizona are Centered in Maricopa County

The plan is to play games in the Phoenix metropolitan area to empty stadiums. Nonessential personnel would be sequestered in isolation at given hotels. Games would be played at Chase Field (home of the Diamondbacks), the 10 spring training complexes in the Phoenix area, as well as other ball fields in the area. So, finding the necessary 15 ball fields for all 30 teams to be playing regularly isn’t out of the question.

But what makes it difficult is that the county of Phoenix resides in, Maricopa County has the highest concentration of coronavirus cases. Which makes sense when you think about it. The most populated city in the state resides in Maricopa County.

Now, according to this data from an ABC affiliate, Arizona is still doing insanely well in comparison to other states. The peak of the virus is expected to come by April 25th. So, it makes some sense to see this state as the target state for restarting the baseball season. But that’s not to say that the people who work for the teams that are sequestered at the hotels aren’t at a lesser risk of contracting the disease, especially with no actual vaccine discovered yet.

All we can do is sit back and hope. The later in the year, the harder it becomes to justify playing games in Arizona, as only one of these stadiums will undoubtedly have a roof and climate control during the heat of mid-May through… September? But baseball can’t think of having their postseason starting mid-October/November. That’s why it seems like they’re rushing this.

Let’s just hope for the best and listen to our leaders about what we can do to flatten the curve.