Right now, it looks like the 2021 season will begin, as scheduled, for the Cubs.
On Monday night, Major League Baseball announced that the league intends to start both spring training and the 2021 regular season for all teams – including the Chicago Cubs – on time. This decision follows the Major League Baseball Player Association’s rejection of a proposal that would have delayed the beginning of the 2021 season, and implemented a 154-game schedule.
If this schedule were put in place, spring training would have began on March 22 and Opening Day would have been pushed back to April 29. Additionally, the regular season would have ended a week later than it was scheduled to and the World Series would have ended around Nov. 10.
It should be noted that the proposal would have also included the return of universal designated hitter, full salaries for players and an expanded postseason. This means that there will be no universal DH rules, or an expanded postseason unless the league and union agree on either, or even both of these things separately before the beginning of the season. Ultimately, the decision involving DH will probably also speed up this year’s free agency, as players who were waiting specifically for this decision will sign sooner rather than later.
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Both MLB and the MLBPA went back and forth discussing the proposal received last Friday throughout the weekend through Monday. MLBPA’s statement cited lack of salary or service time protections, while advocating for the timely start. It also said it opposed the idea of expanded playoffs.
"“Although Player salaries would not be initially prorated to a 154-game regular season, MLB’s proposal offers no salary or service time protections in the event of further delays, interruptions or cancellation of the season,” wrote MLBPA in their statement."
Just like other sports leagues, MLB is gong to have to try to get through the coronavirus pandemic and the hardships that come with it this season. Spring Training camps will be opening in both Florida, and Arizona on time. Pitchers and catchers are set to report this month, on Feb. 17 and Opening Day is set for April 1.
Basically, this means that Chicago Cubs’ baseball will be beginning on time, as scheduled. The North Siders will be making their trek to Mesa’s Sloan Park. Pitchers and catchers will report on Feb 17., as mentioned above and first full-squad workouts will begin on Feb. 22.
The first Cactus league game for the Cubs will take place on Feb. 27, against the Los Angeles Dodgers in Mesa considering spring training schedule will be played as planned. Opening Day for the Chicago Cubs is still slated for April 1 against the Pittsburgh Pirates.