The Chicago Cubs-St. Louis Cardinals series scheduled for London on June 13 and 14 has been officially canceled. It was widely thought that this series would be a no-go regardless of when the season would re-started.
Even if things would have calmed down earlier, traveling across the ocean for a two-game series where the season needed to be shortened and the risk of coronavirus, this just makes sense. I would imagine they will schedule the same series next year based on Olympic Stadium availability.
MLB had already canceled neutral-site series out of the country in Mexico City and San Juan on March 18. Arizona and San Diego were scheduled to play a regular-season game in Mexico City in April. Miami and the New York Mets were supposed to play in Puerto Rico in late April.
Minor League Pay
MLB also announced that they will be paying minor league players $400 a week through the end of May. This is equivalent to their per diem during spring training. The bigger announcement, at least to me, is that they are extending the players’ medical benefits as well.
That could be of great benefit if any of them were to come down with the coronavirus. There has already been a player who has tested positive in the New York Yankees system.
In the feel-good story of the week, Shin-Soo Choo is going to donate $1,000 each to the 190 players in the Texas Rangers system. This is a great gesture by the Rangers outfielder. This will go a long way for the players who are barely making ends meet as it is. Minor league players are notoriously low paid.
Latest on The Season Front
After we wrote about some possibilities the other day about how a 162-game season might still play out, there are rumors that a shortened season is being negotiated. The latest proposal would be a 100-game season with the All-Star Game, slated for Dodger Stadium, being canceled. To make up for canceling the All-Star Game, Dodger Stadium would be the site for the World Series.
The big question is, what would happen if the Dodgers, who are favored to win the NL pennant, make the World Series? You can’t possibly let all seven games be home games.
Would you move the away games to another neutral site? I think this would be the only fair way to go about it.
One-hundred games would certainly change the landscape of the MLB season. Every game would have just a little bit more importance. You would also, in theory, play more divisional games.
If you are playing in a tough division, this would be a distinct disadvantage. The NL Central, for example, would make it a lot tougher for the Cardinals, Reds, Brewers and Cubs to get a Wild Card, as all four teams should be above average. I feel sorry for the Pirates.
Things are evolving day-by-day, so stick with us as we keep you update on all things MLB.
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