The latest report is the MLB office is hoping to approve a proposal that would allow all teams to play in their home parks, but what about the Blue Jays?
The MLB office continues to work on possible solutions to get baseball back in 2020, and the latest idea is an interesting one.
On Tuesday some of the details started to leak, and according to Bob Nightendale of USA Today, the league is looking at a three division format, with 10 teams per division. The idea of American and National leagues would be thrown out the window for the year, and there would be several new and creative ideas thrown in the mix.
One interesting point that Nightengale made was that ideally, the league is hoping to find a way that all teams can play in their home ballparks. The schedules would be different to minimize travel days and to get as many games played as possible in a shortened season, but they’re still hoping that teams can play in their home markets, without fans for now of course.
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That’s all well and good, but what happens to the Blue Jays in that scenario?
We’re looking at a timeline that is somewhere around the end of June, or perhaps at the beginning of July, so a lot could change by then. That said, as things currently stand right now, the border between Canada and the United States is closed, and I don’t think that’s going to be changing any time soon. With that in mind, it’s impossible for the Blue Jays or visiting teams to be jumping the border to play games in Toronto. Logistically, it just won’t work until a lot of travel restrictions are lifted.
What does that mean for the Blue Jays? It’s hard to say. The saving grace is that they won’t be missing out on ticket revenue in Toronto since there won’t be fans in the stands anyway, so that much is manageable. I suppose they could utilize one of the fields in their new spring training complex in Florida, giving them a home in a warm climate in the United States. It’s probably doable in these unprecedented times, but one would also think the league would give back to the Blue Jays franchise in one way or another.
At the end of the day, there’s only going to be so much the Blue Jays, or the MLB office can do for Canada’s only team in this scenario. They’re going to do whatever they can to make sure that baseball is played this year, and if that means the Blue Jays have to make some concessions, it may just have to be that way. The most important factor is going to be the infection rates in both Canada and the United States, and when the border can be re-opened.
Until that happens, it doesn’t matter if the MLB office wants teams to be able to play in their home markets, it won’t be a reality in Toronto, at least not for now.