MLB Tells Managers Be Prepared For Spring Training, But….

Some optimism for the full season but no guarantees.

There are baseball fans who are saying that all they want for their holiday gift is a 2021 Major League and Minor League Baseball season. MLB is providing some hope for those fans that a full spring training, regular season and playoffs can occur in 2021 and have told Major League Baseball managers to get ready for the opening of spring training in February. But, at the moment COVID-19 is spiraling out of control in the United States. The American-Canadian border remains shut which brings up the question of the status of Toronto Blue Jays home games. In 2020, Canadian officials said no to Blue Jays ownership and would not allow the team to play games in Toronto forcing the team to set up shop in Buffalo, New York to host games. There is no agreement between the players and the owners on just how to proceed with the season.

There are two COVID-19 vaccines that are in use. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines. There could be another one that might be approved in the United Kingdom in about a week. The promise of the vaccine is tantalizing for the owners and players and that could push back the season. The theory is by May, the season opener is scheduled for April, enough people will be vaccinated which would allow people to watch games at stadiums and people connected to teams will be able to get vaccine protection. That would create a stadium revenue stream. But an awful lot has to go right. The out-of-control COVID-19 spread has to come down. People need to be vaccinated as soon as possible. That will be a daunting task. MLB cannot control the timeline. It could take six to nine months. The nine-month number would push the timeline into the playoffs. 2021 will not be a normal season.