When Will Major League Baseball Begin In 2021?

Football season is over! While most red-blooded Americans are standing around in a crazed stupor wondering how and why they’ll have to wait until this fall for the next season to begin, the rest of us are left yearning for America’s true sport — baseball. The MLB recently announced the season schedule. Much to everyone’s surprise, it marked the fourth season in a row where all 30 clubs will play on Opening Day (which has been scheduled on April 1st in a perhaps tactically erroneous move). 

April 1st might mark the first time all Major play their first game on the same day since the 1968 season.

Nowhere are fans more excited than in NYC. Spring training for the Mets and Yankees will begin on March 1st at 1:05 PM, providing them with a full month to gear up for the season. 

The major TV networks are gearing up as well. ESPN is preparing to offer coverage on Opening Day, noting that George Springer will be watched by fans as he plays his first game as a member of the Toronto Blue Jays (which will be battling the New York Yankees. Fox will chime in on April 3rd to mark another occasion: The Philadelphia Phillies will be hosting the Atlanta Braves. Don’t forget to check out the rest of the schedule for season-long updates.

Curious about new safety protocols implemented in the wake of the somewhat awkward 2020 season? Vaccine distribution won’t be in full swing until later this summer, so we can expect fan activity at stadiums to be diminished from the norm. 

Games will feature a bit of oversight from the COVID-19 Health and Safety Committee made up of at least one MLB operative, one MLBPA operative, and two physicians. They will ensure that health and safety protocols are implemented uniformly and that no local, state, or federal COVID-19 regulations are broken during the season.

Each of the MLB’s Clubs shall also present a written COVID-19 plan before consulting with government authorities and staff on site. This plan must then be approved by the aforementioned committee. The Clubs must also appoint two separate positions for the duration of the season: one Infection Control Prevention Coordinator and one Compliance Officer with relevant seniority. Those who take the positions will ensure that protocols in the Operations Manual are followed to the letter. 

Non-compliant teams will be sanctioned.

Players will be required to undergo COVID-19 testing before reporting for training in addition to taking a five-day quarantine at home. They must continue to quarantine until the results of testing are made available. PCR testing will also be required throughout the season, which will be conducted by the Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory using saliva collection kits. Players will be tested every other day during training, the season, and the postseason where applicable. 

Those who show symptoms or test positive for COVID-19 will be removed from the roster immediately.

What Was Different About Major League Baseball This Season?

The MLB has been hit hard by COVID-19. Some of the changes made this season occurred behind the scenes, but hardcore fans noticed almost everything. Not everyone was happy with the way this season ended. That seems obvious enough from the criticisms, which were harsh even in Tampa where the World Series finale match was played. Critics wonder if fans will bother to tune in if the MLB faces similar problems next year.

Many fans believe the increasing use of analytics to determine the future of the MLB series isn’t doing the game any good. And even the Chicago Tribune likened the end of the season to “baseball’s version of ‘Dumb and Dumber.’”

There was especially distaste for Dodgers player Justin Turner, who celebrated with his fellow players after they won the series — despite having tested positive for COVID-19. 

Dodgers President Andrew Friedman said of the decision: “For him, being a free agent, not knowing exactly how the future is going to play out, I don’t think anyone was going to stop him. From my perspective, I think he was mindful of other people. This is something we’re going to wrap our arms around tonight and in the morning and figure out where we’re going from here.”

The MLB called out the behavior as unacceptable to the standards it represents, especially when considering how the entire season played out due to coronavirus restrictions.

A statement read: “While a desire to celebrate is understandable, Turner’s decision to leave isolation and enter the field was wrong and put everyone he came in contact with at risk. When MLB Security raised the matter of being on the field with Turner, he emphatically refused to comply.”

It was even more concerning after the MLB did so well in maintaining those coronavirus standards throughout the series. They made it through the entire season without a single case of coronavirus infection due to players. 

The MLB will now investigate Turner for his violation of mandated protocols, even after he was warned. What will happen to him in the future is anyone’s guess, but it might be possible that we see him banned from the major leagues.

The Tribune commented on the MLB and baseball as a whole in the current era, discussing the possibility that there isn’t a single all-star player worth watching — or rather, one who forces us to watch. Players like Tom Brady or Kevin Durant don’t have equals in baseball. While there will always be Hall of Famers, their popularity will never rise to the heights obtainable in other sports.

The trusted news source also suggested that the influx of new rule changes could be doing irreparable damage to the game. One example is when home-plate colliding was banned all the way back in 2014. There is also now a universal designated hitter, which is blamed for increasing the strikeout percentage nearly 10 points in the last decade, from 16.4 percent to 23.4 percent. Is anyone interested in watched one in four balls fail to connect?

Rene Rivera Turning Heads After Three Long Balls For The Mets

Sunday afternoon saw a fierce game of baseball played at Sahlen Field, where Mets catcher Rene Rivera managed three home runs. Syracuse pounded Buffalo into the ground 10 to 4. The 35-year-old managed a few early-game upsets against Conor Fisk and Jordan Romano. The three long balls he hit to score those runs pushed his number up to twelve for the year — which is no small feat.

Syracuse hitting coach Joel Chimelis had this to say: “I don’t think anyone knew. He was the one that told me that this was his first three-homer game in his career. I was like, ‘Wow, that’s awesome.’ He was pretty excited about it.”

“His body works right,” Chimelis continued. “He still uses his lower half very well when he gets into position, so he creates some torque when he’s going well. We have a bunch of older players on the team and each one always tries to help out. They always communicate and if they see something, they let the players know or let me know.”

Rivera is known for going the distance to help out the newbies. He knows what it was like at the beginning of his career and how hard it was pushing to make it higher and higher. Now that he’s about where it wants to be in his career, he wants to help those who still have a way to go: he even sees it as a responsibility that veteran players should always have. He’s not the only player who agrees with that point of view.

Chimelis later said that Rivera was “always one of the first ones in the cage and has a routine with a heavy bat and some drills. They know he’s going to be there. He’s usually the first one to hit and when he’s not, the players are like, ‘Hey, where’s Rene? What’s going on?’ So when they see stuff like that it makes everyone else have a routine. They wear me out sometimes. I’ve been coaching for a while and these guys love to hit and get their work in.”

Other players aren’t slacking, either. Danny Espinosa managed two doubles, Ruben Tejada got one out of three good hits, and Luis Guillorme struck a home run during his four game hits. Bo Bichette nabbed three hits. Not too shabby at all.

The Most World Series Victories: No One Tops The Yankees

There are many teams that build a strong team for a few years, but few teams have had the utter dominance over a sport for any amount of time as the New York Yankees have in baseball. If you’re trying to find out who played in the most World Series, and who has the most World Series Victories, the answer is the Yankees. It isn’t even close.

Although the Yankees wouldn’t appear in any of the first 20 World Series, they bought a pitcher named Babe Ruth from the Boston Red Sox after the 1919 and the rest was history. Yankees Stadium is often referred to as “The House That Ruth Built.” Behind the bat of one of the greatest power hitters in history, the Yankees made the World Series for the first time in 1921. They would go on to make three World Series in a row. They would be defeated by the Giants in their first two appearances, not winning their first title until 1923.

A Dynasty Unlike Any Others

From 1920-1964, a period of 45 seasons, the Yankees defined a level of dominance that will probably never be matched in baseball again. They played in 29 of 45 World Series and won a remarkable 20 of them. This was an amazing run that hit its fiercest apex between 1947 and 1964. During this period, the Yankees made it into 15 of 18 World Series and won 10 of those 15. During their most dominant period, The Yankees won the Series five years in a row. Then the Yankees won four years in a row during that time. Only two other times has a team won 3 in a row, with one of those being the 1998 to 2000 Yankees.

The Pure Numbers

The New York Yankees have played in 40 World Series, by far and away the most (twice as much as the 2nd place Giants at 20). They have also won the most by far with 27 wins, well over double that of the Cardinals who come in second at 11 wins. Even if the number two teams in both categories hit an unparalleled level of success, it would take decades for them to catch up.

In Conclusion

Dynasties come and go, but it’s hard to argue with the sheer dominance that the Yankees showed for many decades, replacing a roster full of future Hall of Famers with more players who would then themselves have Hall of Fame careers. The Yankees have a dynasty like no other in baseball. With the reloading o their current roster with home run hitters like Giancarlo Stanton, Gary Sanchez, and Judge, it looks like the Yankees are poised for many more victory parades through New York City.