Late Monday, this tweet was sent out from the account of former big leaguer Trevor Plouffe:
Want some good baseball news??— Trevor Plouffe (@trevorplouffe) May 4, 2020
I just heard from multiple sources that on June 10th, Spring Training 2 will start. July 1st will be Opening Day and all teams will be playing at their home ballparks.
We’ll be discussing it in full on the next @TalkinBaseball_
Well, that sounds encouraging and rather detailed! And then, a few hours later, came another one from another former major leaguer, Phil Hughes:
Ok, I’ve talked with multiple sources and can confirm a June 10th spring training 2 with a July 1 opening day proposal is expected to be on the table soon. Trevor Plouffe had it first. I had it 2nd. Someone else will have it 3rd— Phil Hughes (@PJHughes45) May 4, 2020
This one immediately made me suspicious of the whole thing. The “Trevor Plouffe had it first. I had it 2nd. Someone else will have it 3rd” sounds completely facetious, and then, someone who likely has actual sources weighed in:
There's no proposed date for the MLB season to start. That rumor running around today is false. Sorry.— keithlaw (@keithlaw) May 4, 2020
We’d all like to see baseball, of course, and sooner rather than later. But there are a number of things that have to happen before any baseball is played in North America, not the least of which is having the 30 ballparks in 26 cities, 17 states and two countries all certified by local and state officials as being okayed for use. For states who are opening in “phases” — and that includes New York and California, home to seven MLB teams — opening of live sports and other similar entertainment won’t come until the last phase of reopening.
Wise words here:
As we move into May all of us want to see baseball sooner rather than later. I can’t speak for anyone else but until something is taken away we don’t realize how important it is. Just know that most of the restarting plans are not true. They are made up by people who are guessing— Steve Stone (@stevestone) May 5, 2020
So many different plans have been floated, from the all-Arizona plan to an Arizona/Florida hybrid to an Arizona/Florida/Texas idea, that it appears to me what’s happening is that all the ideas that are out there are being treated as if they are actually going to happen, when in reality no one really knows when and/or how baseball is going to start this year. These ideas could be just things that are thrown out there for discussion and might or might not be seriously considered.
The latest “proposal,” as noted in the tweets, appears to have a “Spring Training 2.0” sometime in mid-June and a start to the season in early July. Which would be great, of course, but...
What really stands in the way here is that, per this ESPN.com article, an interview of Major League Baseball Players Association chief Tony Clark, not a single thing has yet been run by the MLBPA:
Despite all that has been floated and all the rhetoric that is out there, we have not received anything formal that details an actual plan. To Carlos [Correa]’s point, unless or until we see and receive an actual proposal with a plan or plans — because my guess is there’s going to need to be flexibility in whatever is going to be considered — it’s all assumptions. It lends itself to the uncertainty because there’s a lot of ideations, but not any substance behind them just yet.
I don’t know that there is a definitive plan yet. We continue to engage our experts to best appreciate a number of the logistics and challenges associated with playing in this climate, in this atmosphere. Unless or until we receive something and are able to work through it, anything out there is just a best guess at this point.
And so that’s where we stand. Nothing official is anywhere close to being decided about when, how and where a 2020 MLB season will be played. Anyone who tells you different is just making things up.