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COVID-19: MLB Planning to Begin Their Season in Late June Without Fans

Ballparks Remain Empty On What Would Have Been Baseball's Opening Day

MLB is discussing a potential plan to start the season in late June and allow teams to play at their home ballparks with realigned divisions, according to Bob Nightengale.

Major League Baseball officials have become cautiously optimistic this week that the season will start in late June, and no later than July 2, playing at least 100 regular-season games, according to three executives with knowledge of the talks. They requested anonymity because the plan is still under consideration.

Not only would baseball be played, but it would be played in their own major-league ballparks, albeit with no fans.

MLB is considering a three-division, 10-team plan in which teams play only within their division – a concept gaining support among owners and executives. It would abolish the traditional American and National Leagues, and realign the divisions based on geography.

The three divisions are as followed:

East: Yankees, Mets, Red Sox, Nationals, Orioles, Phillies, Pirates, Blue Jays, Rays, Marlins

Central: Cubs, White Sox, Brewers, Cardinals, Royals, Reds, Indians, Twins, Braves, Tigers

West: Dodgers, Angels, Giants, A’s, Padres, Diamondbacks, Rockies, Rangers, Astros, Mariners

The plan, pending approval of medical experts and providing that COVID-19 testing is available to the public, would eliminate the need for players to be in isolation and allow them to still play at their home ballparks while severely reducing travel.