Major League Baseball’s postseason plan is almost set, with the approval of the MLB Players Association, all that remains between Baseball and Bubble, sources told ESPN.
Questions about when and how families will enter the bubble are resolved, but the neutral-site playoff format for some varieties is expected to be finalized in the next few weeks, sources said.
In the March agreement between the parties, the MLB was given the right to hold a postseason that mimics the bubbles used by the NBA and NHL to protect their players and staff from the COVID-19 outbreak. To modify protocols – the key to a strong bubble – players must agree to change.
Cursory bubble discussions broke out in April when players expressed the possibility of leaving their families a month apart and the league took into account logistical hurdles.
A short-term bubble is currently being negotiated between the league and the union, sources said. Although the league does not require player approval to continue formatting, at stake – MLB posts can garner more than 1 1 billion in ason Sun television revenue – participation in player participation is seen as an essential element.
Under the plan, World Series 20 Texas will begin October at the Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas and will not end after October 28. It will be the end of a month of playoff games that begin with the top four seeds of each league hosting. In the best-of-three wild-card series of three games. Four American League Series Sept. 29, Sept. 30 and will run from October 1, and the National League will play from September 30, October 1 and October 1.
N.L. The most outstanding seed in will play its division series in Arlington, while the next highest seed will face its opponent in Houston’s Minute Maid Park. The top-ranked home team from AL will be the team at Petco Park in San Diego, while the second series will be held at the Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. The AL Championship Series will be held at the NLCS in San Diego and Arlington, with the NL’s top seed – possibly the Los Angeles Dodgers – making its way to a stable October.
The concern of dodgers players, first reported by Athletic, underscores the gap between the sides. Because MLB players have spent the season out of the bubble – and, in many cases, around their families – some players have expressed a desire by the union to continue managing the bubble without harassment, sources said.
Nonetheless, the possibility of systematically testing the playoffs positively is evident in the fact that the MLB insists on an extra security that a bubble is supposedly providing. A positive coronavirus test can result in multiple deferrals. In a tightly scheduled postseason with TV network commitments, such a prospect can be disastrous.
And with many positive tests in MLB this season, finding family members, the league’s position is simple: either families go through quarantine, enter the bubble and live with the players, or they can come to host cities but socially from a distance. Stay away. Players during the postseason.
The MLB didn’t suffer a significant outburst after the St. Louis Cardinals in July, which wasted devastation on their schedule, the fragility of the regular season – leaving the postseason alone – is clear. On Friday night, the San Francisco Giants postponed a game against the San Diego Pedres after someone in the organization tested positive. Saturday’s game between the teams will also be postponed, and if the teams follow this pattern, they will also sit on Sunday.
A bubble would theoretically help MLB weather any positive tests. The lack of travel days in the typical playoff series allows the league to combine days in anticipation of potential positivity. The outbreak, on the other hand, could encourage the league to force players to play immediately using its alternate site, something they didn’t do in the Cardinals or any other team that reported the COVID-19 case, the Miami Marlins.
The possibility of spending more than a month in hotels is still enough for players who need to include family. In any bubble scenario, the league will rent entire hotels, giving players and their families free rein on the property. They will not be allowed to leave the hotel except to participate in sports.
Concerns about the stadium of life within the NBA and NHL bubbles have provoked some baseless players, sources said. At the same time, they acknowledge the success of other league bubbles – no one has tested positive – and the potential damage of disrupting the playoffs that help teams deal with the changed financial landscape. Some people already fear that the free-agent market may be slower than usual this winter; Postseason interrupted by COVID-19 cases may increase it.
Dealing with when and how the family enters the bubble is not the only hurdle. The MLB has also asked to quarantine players in hotels in the last week of the regular season – even teams playing at home – so they don’t have to go through the intake period before the playoffs, sources said. For teams that make up the World Series, those bubbles can be as long as five weeks of life.
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