Sports | August 11, 2020 11:28 am

Report: MLB Considering Bubble Format for Playoffs

We might see a baseball bubble after all

MLB Hoping for 82-Game Season Starting in July
A detailed view of a pair of official Rawlings MLB baseballs. (Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty)
MLB Photos via Getty Images

Major League Baseball has already seen the regular season thrown into disarray after major COVID-19 outbreaks on the Miami Marlins and the St. Louis Cardinals, so it makes sense that they’d be scrambling to come up with some sort of plan to make sure this year’s playoffs aren’t derailed by the virus. According to new reports by ESPN and the Los Angeles Times, the league has had preliminary discussions about switching to a “bubble” format for the postseason.

Citing an anonymous person “briefed on the matter but not authorized to speak on it publicly,” the Times reports that the league is preparing contingency plans for the postseason but it’s still possible teams could continue to play playoff games in their home ballparks. ESPN notes that the league is considering a multi-city bubble similar to the NHL’s.

“Because of MLB’s expansion to 16 playoff teams, the league would need at least three hubs to complete its wild-card round before shrinking to a two-hub format for the division series,” the publication points out. “The league championship series and World Series could be held at one or two stadiums. Remaining in one metropolitan area would allow teams to avoid air travel and perhaps remain at a single hotel for the entire postseason, which is scheduled to begin Sept. 27.”

Southern California, the Chicago area and New York would all make sense as potential hubs due to the fact that they have multiple ballparks, but a source told ESPN that no decisions about locations for the hypothetical postseason bubbles have been made yet.

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