Reaction to Jeff Passan Article About Starting the 2020 MLB Season As Early As May (Guest Post)
We once again welcome Owen Hetherington to Start Spreading The News and welcome his great insight.
Earlier this week, ESPN published an article written by Jeff Passan regarding the possibility of starting the 2020 season as early as May. For this plan to work, MLB would have to be backed by federal health officials to ensure the safety for all teams and personnel working with the teams. There were several ideas discussed in Passan’s article about how Major League Baseball would go about executing the start of the season. Of course, there were mixed reactions on Twitter and in the sports community on what people thought of the proposal. To say the least, there would be a lot of hurdles that MLB would have to jump over to make this idea a reality. That would include another abbreviated spring training to get the players back into shape, quarantining players and anyone involved during game operations, rule changes to ensure proper social distancing, and even the idea to implement the electronic strike zone so umpires could remain six feet away from the catcher.
As a baseball fan, the thought that new policies are going to be enforced that will change the game bothers me. I do not like many of the new ideas that are being proposed. But, on the other hand, if it ensures the safety of players and will bring us games, how can I complain?
One of the biggest challenges that MLB is going to face is getting players on board to say goodbye to their wives and children and families for the next few months while we deal with this pandemic. The idea seems like a long shot, but I imagine that the majority of players will be in favor of the proposal. Think of a guy like DJ LeMahieu. That guy seems to sleep, breathe, and eat baseball. He might be willing to do this if it meant he could lace up the spikes again. If players want to be paid, they’re going to have to play. In addition, there would have to be expanded rosters as well, to assure that players are able to be substituted and rested. That’s a big reason why there’s not a doubt in my mind that the Union will be in favor of the proposal.
Working in Minor League Baseball as an intern for the Rochester Red Wings, a Triple-A affiliate of the Minnesota Twins, I can’t help to wonder what is going to happen to minor league guys when this all goes down. As stated above, there have been discussions on how Major League Baseball will go about expanding the rosters this season, but no definite conclusion. I would imagine that the rosters would be expanded from 26 to somewhere near 40-man rosters. In the event of injuries, how do you keep minor leaguers fresh to be called up with no minor league play? This are questions that Major League baseball would have to consider for any chance of this happening
For me, I would love to see baseball work around all of issues so the game can return. There are health concerns, logistical concerns, and concerns over rule changes. Assuming these can be addressed, I am eager to see the Yankees play.
The negative reaction that I can’t quite process in my head yet comes from people who say they would rather wait until 2021 for baseball to start back up. Not me. I wouldn’t care if MLB decided to change the rules to Wiffleball – baseball is baseball. I would give anything to watch Gerrit Cole and the Yankees go after Championship #28 right now. Instead, I’ve been watching Yankees Classics on YES for the past three weeks. I don’t care if they play 10 regular-season games, just give me baseball back. Give me Gerrit Cole in pinstripes in the middle of the Arizona desert. I don’t care. I just miss baseball.