Major League Baseball is still trying to figure out how exactly it can carry out a season in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak. Monday was reportedly another day where the league held numerous conference calls, including a couple with representatives of the players union in order to figure out just how baseball can come back. The talks are amidst a period of time when the league would be rolling right along in any normal year.
The official opening day was supposed to be March 26, meaning the season would be more than a week into the regular season. This is the time of year when teams who won’t sniff the playoffs still look like contenders. It’s when fans of down and out franchises like the Baltimore Orioles still believe they have a chance. This year, people are watching videos of seasons past as a way to try and enjoy America’s Past time at least a little bit.
What seems to be out of the question is that if MLB does have a real regular season this year, the teams will be playing in their own stadiums, at least to start off.
Fox News reports one solution, which has at least been tossed around before. The proposal is to play every single game in Arizona. The idea is to put all 30 teams in ballparks in the Phoenix area and then play in front of empty stands.
The reasoning behind this is that teams won’t be traveling as much and that will limit their exposure to parts of the country where it’s near impossible to avoid catching COVID-19. Using Spring Training sites for regular-season games has been an idea certain officials have been tossing around since the day baseball put a hold on everything.
One of the reasons Arizona is reportedly preferred is that there are at least 10 Major League level ballparks, including the Arizona Diamondbacks’ home park all about 50 miles away from each other. Florida has several spring parks as well, but they are far more spread out, about 220 miles from one end of the state to the other.
Super Agent Scott Boras talked to the media after the conference calls, saying the idea would allow “a sense of a return to some normalcy. You talk to a psychologist about it and they say it’s really good for a culture to have sport and to have a focus like that, where for a few hours a day they can take their minds off the difficult reality of the virus.”
While playing in Arizona has some traction, Major League Baseball officials were careful to tell the media nothing is close to being decided yet. That includes whether or not there will be a regular-season at all.