The MLB 2020 revised schedule has been released, but it is subject to change dependant on any number of variables, any of which can alter the season dramatically.
The release of MLB’s 2020 revised schedule for all thirty teams gives solace to the many fans who hung in there through three months of stalled and sometimes childlike, negotiations between owners and players.
But major league baseball is not out of the woods by far, and wagers are being taken in Las Vegas on if the 60-game regular season will be completed before a shutdown is ordered, much less the postseason.
Whether to appease teams pointing to the imbalances in the revised schedule or to accede to the ever-changing landscape engendered by the spread of COVID-19 in several U.S. cities, MLB is quick to remind that the revised plan is in the process of being changed again.
MLB is judiciously taking advantage of the stands being empty of fans, thus eliminating the rush to print and sell tickets, to re-evaluate daily a final version of a pro-active but player-safe schedule.
In theory, an MLB revised schedule can be withheld until two or three days before Opening Day, and teams, along with television crews and media, will still have ample time to get to where they need to be.
MLB 2020: So Many Hoops To Jump Through
**** Players reporting to Spring Training II will first undergo COVID-19 testing and a physical examination before stepping onto a field. MLB will use the results of those initial tests to determine if a particular team is subject to the possible spread of the virus.
As of a week ago, 40 MLB players and staff personnel tested positive. Seven of those are from the Phillies organization.
Names of players have not been released, but All-Star outfielder Charlie Blackmon of the Colorado Rockies has become the first Major League Baseball player known to have tested positive for the coronavirus, according to reports.
The states of Florida, Texas, California, and Arizona have all been designated by the CDC as “hot spots” that need to be closely monitored with every rising hospital cases.
The teams in those states comprise almost one-third of the 30 MLB teams.
Ongoing player testing and the ensuing results will determine the MLB 2020 once and for all.
That is even before a first pitch is thrown when the World Champion Washington Nationals and Max Scherzer square off against the New York Yankees and Gerrit Cole in a nationally televised opener scheduled for July 23.
MLB 2020: Team Roster Hoops And Loops
Sunday at 4 p.m. ET marks the first major roster deadline for all 30 teams, which must submit their 60-man Player Pool — that is, the group of players who will be able to play for them this season.
This means general managers will be flying blind in a sense they are forced to select players based solely on past performance and reputation, and without the benefit of observation during Spring Training.
A full accounting of MLB 2020 roster rule can be found here, but for now, we’ll just state that active team rosters will open with 30 players, and then gradually trickle down to 26. There is no minor league season, and therefore there can be no callups.
This portends to be exciting for fans as they watch their team maneuver through a minefield of unknown and unpredictable developments – but surely a nightmare for GM’s and field managers.
MLB 2020: A Reliance On Individual Player Responsibility
It’s fair to say the MLB 2020 season will last as long as the players allow. The 67-page MLB Safety Procedures has been expanded to cover 120 pages, and it will be required reading and the focus of team discussions during the first two days of testing and “orientation” when players start reporting.
A reading of the restrictions is comprehensive, and a concerted effort to adhere to them by individual players will require the same concentration and dedication as the level they devote themselves to watching game film and answering reporter’s questions.
The good news is the players want to get to the finish line as much as the owners. The postseason bonanza in television money is something the players have their eyes trained on, as well as the networks.
The march to the MLB 2020 World Series always ends with the team that succeeds in uniting themselves as one and pledged to a target that leaves no room for individual promotion.
This year, more than ever, one or two strays headed out to a crowded nightclub can upset not only their team but all of major league baseball.
MLB 2020: Entering A Season Of The Unknown
In so many ways, the MLB 2020 season will read like a mystery novel. Except, it will be real as it unfolds.
What appears above is only a sampling of the unknowns and challenges that need to be met and resolved. Some even before the season get off the ground.
What will help, though, is the haggling between MLB and the MLBPA appears to have subsided, at least to the point where both have a joint mission.
Beyond that, however, the real boss is still COVID-19. We can only hope that all players have or develop a respect for the virus, enabling them to follow established protocols as best they can.
At this point, with engines running and blastoff near, there is no room any hiccup, whether intentional or not, that results in the need to shut the 2020 MLB season down again, and this time, possibly for good.