MLB keeps on trying. As fans, we can appreciate the effort, but there are counterforces at work. This time, the main culprit is geography.
MLB is learning a lesson we read about in grade school. Mother nature always wins. Whether it dams, levees, snow fences, or social distancing, they all get an “A” for effort and hope.
But every levee built by man has a structural weak point, just like the idiots in California and Florida who can’t seem to live another day without going to the beach.
MLB’s latest plan to resume the 2020 season has a target date of July 1 to begin play. Regrettably, though, we haven’t heard the latest from COVID-19.
And then there are those damn scientists and medical doctors to contend with – like Dr. Anthony Fauci who chimed in yesterday with:
“Safety, for the players and the fans, trumps everything,” Fauci told the New York Times. “If you can’t guarantee safety, then, unfortunately, you’re going to have to bite the bullet and say, ‘We may have to go without this sport for this season.”
MLB Says We’ll Try Again…
But for the moment, let’s say Fauci is wrong, and a miracle is about to reveal itself in our midst.
MLB fans will recall Plan A, the so-called Florida-Arizona league, that was heralded as a way for teams to play a regular season with limited travel to and from games and based where all 30 teams had their Spring Training camps set up.
Conveniently, each league was divided equally into fifteen teams, and MLB went as far as to set up a workable proposal offering six “divisions”, three in each league. All set – let’s go!.
Not so fast as the Major League Baseball Player’s Association (MLBPA) correctly pointed out a major problem.
Because under the plan (damn the details), they would be separated and, in fact, quarantined from their families for four months, forced to exist in single hotel rooms.
And lest we forget, without Lady Gaga, there is no “show”.
MLB didn’t cave; they just recognized that without happy players, we have nothing here. So, what do we have now?
Meet The New MLB Plan – Oops!
As always, the devil is in the details, but Joel Sherman, writing for the New York Post, provides a decent outline for the latest proposal MLB is floating.
The essential difference is that all teams will play on their home field in their home city.
Voila, this takes care of the player’s issues in the previous plan because they can now live with their family in their seasonal homes.
Except that now another problem emerges, and even Dr. Fauci can’t do much about this one – geography!
MLB has thirty teams scattered across the United States – and one even in a foreign country.
The Center For Disease Control (CDC) is not going to like the idea of the New York Yankees or Philadelphia Phillies (Division roommates) hopping on a plane to play a weekend set with the Tampa Bay Rays and Miami Marlins twelve-hundred miles from home-base.
Similarly, the Left Coast division plan has the Seattle Mariners traveling 1,000 miles to San Diego to play the Padres – and vice-versa.
All this traveling is bound to raise a red flag with the CDC, which MLB, by the way, has pledged to follow all of its recommendations.
As with all proposals to resume the 2020 MLB season, the main goal is to get live games before the public on television – a primary money-making tool for teams who find themselves in dire straights with red marks all over their ledger.
MLB: Stop Trying To Put A Square Peg In A Round Hole
Raise your hand is you don’t want to see major league baseball this year.
No one, right?
But what MLB is missing is that this isn’t something they can assign a team of engineers to build, for instance, a tool that will automatically unplug a clogged drain with the push of a button.
We hear daily about taming the beast. The work to make that happen must go on – and it will.
Shoot the messenger if you must, but the way I see this playing out is we (baseball fans) may simply have to accept Dr. Fauci at his word, and all the knowledge he has gained in his 79 years on this planet.
I’m hopeful for a miracle, but I’m also willing to accept a tired but true baseball adage – Wait Till Next Year.