The Coronavirus pandemic has created plenty of uncertainty throughout the sports landscape. When sporting events resume, the creativity needed to fit in the season will be on display. Major League Baseball has up to 15 plans on how they will conduct their shortened season when it resumes.
The thought of the Yankees Red Sox and Mets in the same division all year long. Oh. My. God.
— Eric Hubbs (@BarstoolHubbs) April 28, 2020
The plan to play all games in Arizona was one of the first to be released. Most games would take place in the Phoenix area and already drew a thumbs up from government health officials. It would be the most isolated plan on the list. Other plans list multiple cities, which have begun to reopen after lifting social gathering restrictions.
The idea is to start playing a season of about 100 games, starting no later than July 2.
The plan drawing the most interest is one realigning the divisions for each team to play in their respective home parks, without any fans. There would be three 10-team divisions of the East, Central, and West.
USA TODAY reports a three-division realignment is under consideration by MLB for this season, and PLEASE let this happen, because the Cubs' division would be insane. https://t.co/GZIxkIIeVu pic.twitter.com/NzVy5Rxq1B
— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) April 28, 2020
The divisions call for nothing but chaos as teams will scramble to make the playoffs. Rivalries will grow even more potent, especially in the loaded Eastern division. Each division will only play games against each other. New York Yankees/New York Mets, Yankees/Red Sox, Mets/Nationals, Mets/Phillies, Rays/Yankees, Red Sox/Rays…the highly contested games are endless.
Can It Happen?
One of the major questions with any plan is the location of where the season will start. Spring Training will have to restart, and players will need to get their bodies in game shape in a short amount of time. Some players also expressed their desire to avoid spending an extended period away from their families. The players union and MLB executives will also need to agree on the correct salaries for each player, likely resulting in pay cuts.
Just like everything in life right now, it will be handled one day, one step at a time. Anything moving in a forward direction is excellent, and the 2020 season will undoubtedly play out in a way we may never witness again.