The MLB has cautiously monitored the coronavirus outbreak, thus delaying the beginning of the 2020 season. The question remains: what does this mean for the Chicago Cubs?
There is no denying that the coronavirus outbreak has left its mark on the sports world as a whole. Since the sports world has practically shut down, sports fans such as myself are left feeling anxious and confused, just awaiting the return of our favorite pastimes. Sports, including the NHL and NBA, among others, have been ongoing, so those have been postponed until play and spectatorship is deemed safe. However, MLB is facing a different situation.
The 2020 MLB season was set to begin with Opening Day scheduled for March 26. However, the outbreak not only suspended spring training, which was underway, but it also delayed the MLB season. Initially, the MLB stated that the suspension would be in place for at least four weeks, which would have pushed Opening Day back two weeks to April 9. As of Monday, the MLB released a statement saying the season would be pushed back until mid-May at the earliest.
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During a time where things have been changing so rapidly, there is no telling what changes could come within the next few days, let alone the next few months. In my opinion, it is rather difficult to gauge what the MLB is likely to do in regards to the season. But, there are a variety of different options that I am sure the MLB is exploring. There were talks of the MLB beginning the season on Memorial Day weekend, on the Fourth of July, or even canceling the season. I believe that the sooner the MLB gets underway, the better.
Beginning the season on Memorial Day weekend would prevent as much gameplay from being lost as possible. Things like the All-Star Game and the postseason could stay intact as well. Beginning the season on the Fourth of July, would take away a lot of gameplay and would probably result in the cancelation of the All-Star game.
But, the playoffs could still be intact but probably minimally delayed. Beginning the season, this late would likely result in an 81 game season, which isn’t exactly ideal, but hey, it’s better than nothing. This leads us to our final option of a canceled season.
It saddens me even to think the season could be canceled, but it’s probably too early also to assess how likely of a possibility this is. With all of this in mind, the question remains: what does all of this mean for the Chicago Cubs, and what situation would be best for this Cubs team?
The Cubs have not had a great past few seasons. 2018 was nothing less of a disaster, and while 2019 was supposed to be a better year, all that happened was the ballclub just missed the Wildcard and the postseason. These seasons were disappointing, and 2020 was supposed to be better.
Now, with 2020 in question, there are both benefits and setbacks to both starting sooner rather than later. On the one hand, jumping right into the season would get the ball rolling, and we would see what this 2020 Cubs team with a new set of coaches and a new manager is really about. On the other hand, fewer games could lead to better performance, who knows?
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I would love to see baseball back as soon as possible, and as much play as possible. However, is this realistic? Only time will tell as we await further news updates from the MLB. In the meantime, I hope everyone stays healthy and stays safe during this difficult time.