Within the week Major League Baseball will offer a plan to the Players Association that will resume baseball activities. It will propose a June “spring training” which results in an opening day in July. The proposal already comes with its detractors before it has become national news.
Teams are telling players to get ready and get in shape. MLB is expected to send a return-to-play proposal to the union soon. The gears for baseball's return are starting to turn — but significant hurdles remain for it to become a reality. News at ESPN: https://t.co/fHiasxlS1A
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) May 7, 2020
Most of the country is still in quarantine as MLB has put in the most effort out of the four major sports to resume activities. Before anything is confirmed the owners and players have to be on the same page to keep everyone involved protected. Even if that pans out, the government has to give the green light on it as well.
Can it Be Done?
According to former player Trevor Plouffe, June 10 would be the beginning of Spring Training and July 1 would mark opening day. The three weeks between each date would be enough under normal circumstances, but that is not the case now. The country’s shutdown has made it tough for players to keep themselves in game shape.
For the New York Mets, Wilson Ramos, Marcus Stroman and Edwin Diaz have been able to keep themselves ready. The only reason we know is due to social media but the rest of the organization only knows what the players have told them. It should be assumed that every player on the roster found some creative way to keep themselves ready.
Want some good baseball news??
I just heard from multiple sources that on June 10th, Spring Training 2 will start. July 1st will be Opening Day and all teams will be playing at their home ballparks.
Weâ€™ll be discussing it in full on the next @TalkinBaseball_
— Trevor Plouffe (@trevorplouffe) May 4, 2020
Everything seems cut and dry, but that is far from the case. COVID-19 is nowhere near its finale and the league is taking a major risk, even if fans cannot attend games. Players will still have to travel from city to city no matter how the divisions realign. If one player, umpire or organization member tests positive, we end up at square one again.
Totally Different Game
Beyond health concerns, baseball will be completely different. The 40-man rosters could become 50, and the 25-man roster could become 30. This comes with positives and negatives. Teams can hold extra relievers to bolster their bullpen. But keeping players fresh will be tough especially when managers will opt to use their best guys as much as possible during the limited schedule.
Despite the breaking news, everything is still in the works. Our only confirmation is that there is a plan to submit to bring back America’s Pastime. The rest of the sports landscape will end up basing their future plans off MLB’s decision.