Delayed Start to 2021 Season

So I’m reading Pete Abraham’s Sunday Baseball Notes in the Boston Globe and I see this stuck in the endnotes:

Many executives now believe spring training (and then the regular season) will be pushed back by at least a month in the hope of having fans allowed in ballparks for the regular season.

While there’s been some pretty strong speculation as to a delayed start to the minor league season (staggered spring training resulting in the minors regular season not cranking up until May), this is the first I’m reading of a delayed start at the MLB level beyond that of mere shit being thrown on the wall by writerly types. You could envision major leaguers not reporting until mid-March, spring training games being played in Florida/Arizona in March and April before no crowds and then a May 1 start to the regular season with limited crowds at first and then maybe by July or August full crowds. Whether that’s a smarter approach who the hell knows but if that’s the thinking going around the NY offices of MLB right now with the ramping up of vaccine availability (particularly by April) it’s kinda understandable.

That could push everything further back for the minors of course. A June start rather than a May start.

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I suppose that means they would have to toss the existing schedule. Assuming an available vaccine and open ballparks I want to look at a few roadies and try to check off a few more ballparks.

MLB trying to argue the season should be delayed until the players get vaccinated is utterly phony. Manfred and his stooges know exactly what kind of PR shitstorm would be created if players jumped the line in getting the vaccine. Even the clueless Roger Goodell realized as much when he said the other day no vaccine for players and personnel ahead of the Super Bowl.

It’s all about crowds and revenue.

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Drellich with an article in The Athletic pushing back on the notion of any delay…

From Bob Nightengale…

But Ken Rosenthal notes a “small group of owners” are thinking this…

Start spring training in April, the regular season in May and play a normal 162-game schedule that extends through October. The postseason would take place in November at warm-weather neutral sites, just as the final three rounds did last season.

I’d be fine with cold weather spots, if they had roofs.

Well this can’t be good…

A fucking mess. Although there have been denials, an article in The Athletic says the Cactus League letter was at the instigation of MLB. They wanted that in hand to use as ammunition against the players union to force them to agree to a delay in the start of the season. That letter does look suspicious in light of the fact that pro sports WITH FANS are currently being played in Arizona (i.e., the Coyotes’ NHL games).

Rosenthal wrote an article yesterday advocating a delay. Sincere or trying to curry favor by parroting the owners line?