Even as it deals with early coronavirus testing stumbles, Major League Baseball has unveiled significant aspects of its 2020 schedule. You can find the full slate at MLB.com.
As is evident from a brief scan of the schedules, this won’t be a typical season. Even beyond the shortened format, there’s a notable realignment of the regular season. Opening Day is July 23rd.
Two-thirds of the contests will occur against division rivals, but each of those series will be unbalanced in terms of the home-park mix. The remainder of the contests are interleague affairs between teams of corresponding geographic divisions.
Teams are releasing information in a bit of an ad hoc manner, it appears, with MLB Network revealing the series matchups and clubs following up with specific dates and times. Obviously there could be quite a lot of modification as the season goes on, depending upon the course of the coronavirus pandemic in various localities.
If it wasn’t so sad, it’d be funny.
What a nonsense schedule. To get Yankees-Mets, Dodgers-Angels, Cubs-White Sox, etc 6 games each., they had to schedule divisional games 10 against each of the other four. Instead of 5 home and 5 away, the Yankees for example have seven home games against the Red Sox and only three at Fenway. I realize this year is not normal but why not make it balanced? They could easily have done 63 games, playing each rival 12 tines and then the other league division teams 3 each. Of course that wouldn’t have given a home and home to the cross town teams but with no fans in attendance, did it matter?
Also, how did the Yankees get 13 home games agains Tampa and Boston with only 7 on the road and the opposite of Baltimore and Toronto? The league it seams are trying to ensure there’s playoff baseball in the Bronx assuming the games are played. It’s too bad because without a stupid unbalanced schedule like this, I already picked them to win the pennant (based in their bullpen likely not wearing down in 60 games…and I’m a Sox fan!).
The Yankees have one of the easiest schedule especially the last 23 games.
7/3 home/away split makes no sense. If you do 7/3, then you have a 4-game series, a 3-game series, and another 3-game series. Why not make the 4-game series the home series, and the two 3-game series away series? It’s not 5/5 home/away, but at least it’s 6/4 which is a lot closer to being fair.
I get that 5/5 (because it would likely be a lot of 2-game series) makes life very difficult for the teams for travel, but why not 6/4?
Agreed! It should be at least 6-4.
Can someone clarify division alignment please?
Divisions are the same, but a team will only play teams in their region. West plays only west, east plays East, etc.
Further weighted within division, 60/40 it seems versus the other league.
2/3 and 1/3. 40 games against your usual division and 20 against AL/NL counterpart.
Yes more accurately
Teams can only play other teams in their respective geological regions (for the regular season). For example: The Padres will play teams only in the A.L West and N.L West this regular season.
I think you mean geographical but in a looser sense of the word ‘region’, ‘geological’ would sort of work.
Lol, I definatley meant geographical, thanks for pointing it out lol.
teams that lie on the same rock formation will play each other
I saw the Rangers schedule, and read maybe my favorite comment in a while on twitter. So the Rangers are playing the Rockies at Globe Life Field to kick off the season, and here is the comment: “Arenado’s playing for the home team in that one right?”. I laughed so hard when I saw that.
Another nugget. This is from Evan Grant: The Rangers will fly the most miles of any team in travel this season with 14,706 miles… I hope some of the guys like sleeping on planes.
Fellow Rangers fan and Texan here. This is one of the reasons I’d love to see 2 expansion teams (“Sounds” like Nashville is at the top of the list), because you could then go to NFL style 4×4 divisions in each league, and the Rangers and Astros wouldn’t have to travel 2 time zones over for a ton of games.
In most expansion scenarios I’ve seen, Texas and Houston end up with KC and Tampa in their division, with like Portland added to the West. Or they end up staying in the West with Houston back in the NL.
I would propose:
AL WEST: LAA, OAK, SEA, ARI.
NL WEST: LAD, SD, SF, COL.
AL MIDWEST: HOU, TEX, CWS, KC.
NL MIDWEST: MIN, CHIC, STL, MIL. AL CENTRAL: CIN, DET, CLEV, NASHVILLE*
NL ATLANTIC: TB, CHARLOTTE*, ATL, MIA.
AL NORTHEAST: NYY, BOS, TOR, BAL.
NL NORTHEAST: PHI, PIT, NYM, WAS.
Portland, Vegas, OKC and San Antonio would all certainly make for great expansion cities too. For an out of the box idea, how about San Juan, Puerto Rico?
I don’t get the unbalanced schedule within the divisions.. It is unfair to have to play 7 out of 10 games on the road against a team that you are fighting with in a division. during a short season. MLB always has to do things that make little sense.
I’m fine with it.
A’s are at home for 7 of 10 vs Astros.
I’m with you CCCTL, the Rangers play the Astros about half of September lol, and that is the only month we play them. I’m excited.
Not much of a choice but there will be teams within the division that they’d play 7 out of 10 at home. Cubs look like they have 7 out of 10 at home against the Brewers and Cards but on the road 7 of 10 at the Reds and Pirates.
its not ideal, but seems necessary given the challenges theyre facing with travel. the season is asterisk as it is, we will all have a one or another reason for that in the end.
Im pumped though, cant wait for some real games.
This is a freak season and many decisions are being made with public health in mind, rather than competitive fairness. It’s just one of many things we will have to accept and move on from in 2020. It’s baseball, the least of our worries right now, so i’d hope most people would be able to just enjoy that we’re getting it at all.
I would think it would be safer on the players to travel as little as possible so why not two five game series within the division. It has less travel.
It’s a shortened year of entertainment, not a true baseball season. Why not enjoy it for what it is? Don’t let it ruin your day, let alone Summer.
I’m doing that!
this is the best opinion on the matter
That’s how i’m looking at it. I’m skeptical the season will conclude as planned, but if it does, and nobody gets horribly sick, i’ll just enjoy it for what it is, rule changes and all.
Unpopular opinion: If a team really wanted to win the World Series they should have exposed all of their players (with consent, of course) to the virus a month ago. Going to be pretty wild when an entire team has to quarantine because a player gets the bug after they snuck an instagram model into the hotel on the road. Hope this all works out! America could really use the distraction.
“they should have exposed all of their players (with consent, of course) to the virus a month ago.”
There is a zero percent chance that enough players on any team would consent to being exposed to a potentially fatal disease that we’re still learning about. We also know nothing about the long-term effects on people who have recovered.
Maybe they were exposed. Fought it off.
Fought it off! This is a new disease. No one truly knows the long term effects. Have you seen x-rays? Permanent lung damage can occur and a few children have died from unanticipated Covid related issues. Why would anyone with a clear mind, chance hurting themselves or others by deliberately trying to get this illness?
There’s also at least some evidence that getting it and recovering does not give one 100% immunity.
Doubt you could get 25 or more guys to voluntarily be exposed to a virus even if it has a low fatality rate. Plus there is not evidence you can’t get the virus twice right now, so it may not even work.
GabeofThrones (ironic name considering it’s from a survival of the fittest show) may be making an innocent comment but why is this even a thought?
All right thinking people rightly think this is wrong…..
I’m not suggesting anyone do it, or that anyone would ever consider it, but it would be a hell of a way to attempt to gain a competitive advantage in a “Running Man” type of bizzaro alternate-universe. It’s not like blood-doping isn’t a thing. This could be construed as an extremely unorthodox version of that. I think crazy owners like Al Davis, George Steinbrenner, and other such “win at any cost” types would have probably batted around the idea, haha.
There is no data yet on whether they would be immune plus the long term damage is still not clear
even in young healthy athletes. Not worth the risk…..
This is the best schedule I have ever experienced. On the second thought, does it matter what time or what day games are actually played? They could play two or three in a row then televise them over three days. Just like JEOPARDY.
Doesn’t do much for the gamblers…..
Just the facts Joe: ratings for taped games will not be good.
It seems insane that they’ll be playing two weeks from Thursday. I mean, I will enjoy for what it is, but I think the likelihood that it will be a total trainwreck is pretty high. I hope everyone stays safe.
They are playing exhibition intersquad games right now. The pessimists are going to be shocked when this works.
and they had been warming up since March. they are and will be plenty ready.
Complete geographical realignment of divisions just for this “season” regardless of division would have made more sense than this asinine notion of interleague games.
Finally, we can see the schedule. Awesome.
Sorry to see the Astros’ great marketing idea go the way of the virus…..”Trash Can Tuesday” would have been a great promo…..
And a video monitor bobble head giveaway when they play the Dodgers
I think the Yankees and Red Sox have first dibs…..
I see that the rumor was true that there will be more interleague “rival” games — e.g., NYY v NYM, Cubs v White Sox will be 6-games.
I get that breaking down 10 intra-division games into 3 series (3 + 3 + 4) minimizes travel, but with no fans in the stands, they could keep the 4-game series in one stadium put divide the home team designation to 2 apiece to minimize the advantage to one team.
Yeah, I acknowledge the less travel. But they can change the “home team” designation — so the team gets last at-bats — without increasing travel.
Or they could have just played two, 5 game series. That would have limited travel, and made the schedule balanced.
Is it really just impossible to have two five game series, one for each home team?
I don’t get it, never will. Baseball is stupid.
Red Sox have to play the Yankees 7 times in NY vs. 3 @ Fenway. Going to be tough for the Sox pitching staff with that Gashouse Gang lineup and those short porches in NY.
My silver lining is that at least they’re not screwing with the 2021 season and beyond.
re testing: should just have testers deployed to each stadium instead of just having hubs.
Down with OBP
Is there a reason comments are closed on COVID related topics? Are we letting the anti-science MAGAlomaniacs win?
Oh the Pain
Nah, they are harmless and will be silenced for good on November 3.
I think it’s to save people from the disinformation rampant in those comment sections before they were shut.
Responsible move by the moderators.
I know it would be different
But 5 game series in division, one at each site, would have greatly reduced travel. Also for inter league just play one 4 game series, yea teams would play at one site and not play the same team at home, but so what, it’s not a balanced schedule anyway
Would have a huge reduction in travel during a pandemic. Would also be easy to have common off days for make up games
Gotta admit MLB Network breaking everything down with glee despite the likelihood of MLB not even reaching 30 games before the entire season is scrapped is entertaining.
Or maybe just maybe things goes smooth, there are no large outbreaks and the season gets played in full. The players testing positive now may be because they are coming from all over and haven’t even been in their teams city. Once the season starts and players are fixed in their homes and hotels they will do a great job at preventing infections. But who needs the good prediction, right?
How do they plan on playing this schedule when they can’t even open camp, because 6 months into this thing there still isn’t enough testing capacity?
I’m surprised they still have the “Field of Dreams” game in Iowa on the schedule. Seems like a lot of unnecessary travel in a short season.
Ya the imbalance of home/away interdivisional games is a bit mysifying….
But let’s face it folks, with opt-outs, likley frequent trips to the DL, etc., it’s going to be a very weird season. You can mix radishes, green beans, horse manure and eggs together, but it probably won’t make a good omelette.
But it’s better than watching the umpteenth repeat of the 2014 All Star Game.
The Yankees are going to win 45 games and they will think they are a juggernaut.. when it reality they just had a easy schedule…. and lose to a team that has to actually fight for the spot…. it has happened the last couple of years too!
Dont worry, there wont be a season