Thepostponed the start of the baseball season and closed almost everything else, but now Major League Baseball is back for a 60-game sprint of a season. MLB also announced a newly expanded post-season – if it can find a way to finish the regular season first.
Ten teams have postponed their games due to COVID 19 outbreaks at the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals. Three games scheduled for Sunday have been postponed. It is still unclear when or how the games will be put together, but MLB is revising its planning to accommodate the situation, including the ability to play double headers with seven innings.
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The schedule for multiple teams is in flux, but most games stay on course over the weekend. You can't go to the stadium and personally attend a game, but there are many ways to watch TV. So you can follow the shortened 2020 season without cables.
Aaron Judge and the New York Yankees end a three-game series against the Boston Red Sox on Sunday evening.
Rob Carr / Getty Images
What games are there on TV?
The afternoon game on the MLB Network will take place on Sunday, August 2nd at 4:10 p.m. ET (1:10 p.m.) shows either the Los Angeles Dodgers against the Arizona Diamondbacks or the Texas Rangers against the San Francisco Giants. The evening game on ESPN's Sunday Night Baseball shows the Boston Red Sox against the New York Yankees for game 3 of their series in New York, starting at 7:10 p.m. ET (4:10 p.m. PT).
Other teams in the league play in regional sports networks.
How can I watch the 2020 MLB season on TV without cables?
The 2020 season may be drastically different from the usual six-month campaign with 162 games in recent years, but the way to see baseball in the regular season hasn't changed. The national networks that broadcast MLB games during normal seasons – Fox, Fox Sports 1, TBS, MLB Network and ESPN – will broadcast games in 2020.
You can watch your local regional sports networks such as the local Fox Sports channels, the YES network (New York Yankees), the NESN (Boston Red Sox) or SportsNet LA (Los Angeles Dodgers).
To theMany of the national channels are offered on five of the channels . You should ask every service whether your regional sports network is offered.
To get all national baseball channels, you'll need Sling's Blue / Orange package, which costs $ 45 a month, and the Sports Extra add-on for another $ 10 a month to get MLB Network receive.
Read our Sling TV test.
YouTube TV costs $ 65 a month and includes all major national baseball channels. Depending on your team and your area, you may also have your regional sports network.
Read our YouTube TV test.
The AT&T TV Now Plus-Plus package for USD 55 per month includes ESPN, Fox, FS1 and TBS. However, you need to increase the maximum package of $ 80 a month for regional sports channels and possibly the option of $ 110 a month if you also want MLB Network.
Read our AT&T TV Now report.
Hulu with live TV costs $ 55 a month and includes most major national baseball channels, including ESPN, Fox, and TBS. While some areas may also get regional sports networks, the service does not have an MLB network.
Read our Hulu with live TV test.
FuboTV includes Fox, ESPN, FS1, and TBS in its standard plan of $ 55 a month (which will increase to $ 60 on August 1) and some local regional sports networks, though those looking for MLB Network will need to look elsewhere. Note: ESPN is not currently available, but will be available sometime this summer, says FuboTV.
Read our FuboTV test.
In addition to the services mentioned above, there is MLB.TV, the paid streaming service from MLB. It will be available to stream games out of the market, with the league charging $ 60 for the entire condensed season.
T-Mobile and Sprint users can get a free subscription to MLB.TV for the entire season starting July 21. Those wishing to take advantage of the offer will have time to register until Tuesday, August 4th, at 1:59 a.m. (4:59 a.m. ET).
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Where are games played?
Wrigley Field will host Cubs games this year.
Timothy Hiatt / Getty Images
Regular seasonal games take place in each of the 30 home cities of the 30 teams, with the exception of the Toronto Blue Jays, the only MLB team outside the United States.
On July 18, the Blue Jays announced that they would not be playing home games in Canada as planned after the Canadian government refused to allow MLB teams to travel to the country over COVID concerns. After days of uncertainty, the team announced they would travel to Buffalo, New York, where the Blue Jays' Triple-A club will play.
All baseball games, regardless of city, are played without fans present.
How is the schedule different this year?
The subway series continues in the shortened season.
Rich Schultz / Getty Images
To keep travel to a minimum, teams play in the closest geographic areas. Therefore, expect mainly in-division games with Interleague that are limited to those in the division of the other league (AL East vs. NL East, AL Central vs. NL Central, AL West vs. NL West).
Therefore, as CBS Sports notes in his example, the Nationals will only play against rival NL East teams with interleague games against AL East teams. This means that we may not see the troubled Houston Astros until the Yankees post-season, but those looking for the Stros who hit the garbage cans to get some comeuppance can play their games against the Dodgers in one Rematch of the happy 2017 World Series. The first matchup between the two teams will take place on July 28th and 29th in Houston.
Are there any changes to additional innings?
To make sure the games don't last too long, USA Today's Bob Nightengale said the extra inning game will start with a second place for the hit team. This would continue every half inning until there is a winner.
All extra inning games start with a runner on the second base, starting on the 10th.
– Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale), June 24, 2020
Is there a DH in the NL?
The position of the thrower in the stroke order becomes a designated hitter, with MLB introducing a universal DH for the 2020 season.
What about extended playoffs?
More than half of the teams will play in October this year. On the eve of the season, MLB and the Players Association agreed to expand the playoff field from 10 to 16 teams. All six division winners and all six runners-up in the division will contest the playoffs in addition to two wildcard teams in each league.
Who doesn't play
Milwaukee Brewers' all-star Lorenzo Cain is the youngest known player to sign out due to concerns about the Corona virus from the 2020 season.
Masterpress / Getty Images
Some players have already said that they will not be playing in the shortened season. Here are some of the current players who have announced that they will be sitting outside:
- Mike Leake (Arizona Diamondbacks)
- Joe Ross (Washington Nationals)
- Ian Desmond (Colorado Rockies)
- Ryan Zimmerman (Washington Nationals)
- David Price (Los Angeles Dodgers)
- Welington Castillo (Washington Nationals)
- Felix Hernandez (Atlanta Braves)
- Buster Posey (San Francisco Giants)
- Michael Kopech (Chicago White Sox)
- Héctor Noesí (Pirates of Pittsburgh)
- Jordan Hicks (Cardinals of St. Louis)
- Lorenzo Cain (Milwaukee Brewers)
Twenty-one-year-old Nationals star Juan Soto missed the opening weekend after testing positive for COVID-19, but was released for the game after negative testing and a 10-day quarantine.
Atlanta Braves veteran Nick Markakis originally opted to decline, but announced on July 29 that he would play again for the rest of the 2020 season.