MLB Rumors: Avoiding Postseason Games Late In November A Priority Amid Concerns Of 2nd Coronavirus Wave
Jayne Kamin-Oncea/USA TODAY Sports

When Major League Baseball began evaluating its options for a 2020 regular season that would be impacted by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, there also was the factor of the playoffs.

While MLB had to take into account regular-season games first and foremost, October couldn’t simply be cast aside. Renowned agent Scott Boras presented the league with a plan that included postseason games in December, with the World Series taking place on Christmas.

If MLB and the Players Association are able to come to terms on a plan for 2020 and begin the regular season by early July, an estimated 82 games could be played before leading into the playoffs around the same time as a regular campaign.

Although MLB theoretically has late calendar months open to stage the postseason, there is a preference to avoid relying on that possibility because of concerns over a potential second wave of the coronavirus, according to Tom Verducci of Sports Illustrated:

Baseball does not want to push the postseason deep into November for fear a second wave of the virus could put the postseason at risk. The postseason and its network fees represent a huge chunk of MLB revenues.

Revenues have come into the spotlight of late as owners claim they would lose more money paying players their prorated salaries for games without fans in attendance as opposed to if the entire season was cancelled.

The MLBPA has maintained a March agreement that called for a lump sum advance of $150 million for April and May, plus the agreed-to prorated salaries, was not conditional on playing games with attendance.

Beyond MLB purportedly worrying about a late postseason being further impacted by the coronavirus, there also is the 2021 regular season to keep in mind. Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts and Clayton Kershaw are among those who have raised that point.

Both expressed caution with cutting too much into the offseason, when players use some of that time to recover before embarking on another long year.

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