Could we have baseball by the end of May?
It seems every day things are changing so fast, that what was reported yesterday has flipped around 180 degrees, and that information is now obsolete.
There have been some rumblings that the MLB season could begin possibly in May with almost of the games being played in Arizona and a few of the games in Florida.
The entire MLB season would be played in empty spring training stadiums in Arizona along with Banc One Ballpark in Phoenix as all stadiums are within a 50 mile radius in Arizona.
They could play three games a day at all the stadiums beginning at 11 AM in the morning and wrapping up the day with the last game at seven or seven thirty.
Florida was not given heavy consideration due to the fact that the stadiums are much further apart, and the rainy season begins in June which would mean daily delays because of the afternoon storms.
The weather is hot, but dry and not a lot of rain in Arizona, so no need to really worry about weather delays or rainouts.
The latest proposal has two stadiums in Florida being used as the games would be played indoors. Marlins Park in Miami, and Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg the current home of the Tampa Bay Rays.
This is a unique season, so there will be a lot of experimenting as it relates to division alignment and some rules.
The baseball traditionalist will hate this, while the folks that have been crying to shake up the game of baseball will embrace these changes if only for the current 2020 season.
According to a report in USA Today, by Bob Nightengale, there would be a three week spring training period including exhibition games which would begin sometime in May providing the COVID-19 pandemic is under control and the social distancing rules can be relaxed a bit.
Once the season begins there could be a roster expansion to allow teams to carry 26-29 players for the first month of the season.
Here is where it gets interesting. The division alignment that we are used to seeing would be gone and replaced by divisions that align with the teams geographic area of spring training.
There would be two leagues, the Grapefruit league and the Cactus League. The division alignments would be as follows:
NORTH: New York Yankees, Philadelphia Phillies, Toronto Blue Jays, Detroit Tigers, Pittsburgh Pirates.
SOUTH: Boston Red Sox, Minnesota Twins, Atlanta Braves, Tampa Bay Rays, Baltimore Orioles.
EAST: Washington Nationals, Houston Astros, New York Mets, St. Louis Cardinals, Miami Marlins.
NORTHEAST: Chicago Cubs, San Francisco Giants, Arizona Diamondbacks, Colorado Rockies, Oakland Athletics.
WEST: Los Angeles Dodgers, Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, Cleveland Indians, Los Angeles Angels.
NORTHWEST: Milwaukee Brewers, San Diego Padres, Seattle Mariners, Texas Rangers, Kansas City Royals.
The World Series would feature the winner of the Grapefruit League against the winner of the Cactus League and the seven game series would be split between Banc One ballpark in Arizona, and one of the stadiums in Florida.
Again this is just a proposal being talked about and there has been absolutely nothing officially announced to confirm this.
There is also an idea being floated about that the DH would be used in all games.
Does this proposal excite you? As baseball great Tony Larussa said, “Why say no now?” Larussa is right. This going to be a unique season, so why not experiment.
You’ve got nothing to lose.