Tuesday, September 22, 2020

2020-21 MLB offseason key dates: Free agency, Spring Training, Opening Day 2021, and more


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Major League Baseball released its 2021 spring training schedule on Wednesday. The most notable element of the announcement had less to do with any particular matchup, and more to do with what MLB is signaling: that it intends to play a regular, full-length campaign next year after being forced to settle on an abbreviated, 60-game sprint because of the pandemic.

Whether or not the league can pull that off is to be seen. At minimum, it seems unlikely that fans will be allowed to enjoy the games as they did before the COVID-19 pandemic. CDC director Robert Redfield said on Wednesday that he expects a vaccine will not be readily available until late second quarter or the third quarter of 2021

Nevertheless, we decided this would be a good time to provide a calendar with some notable upcoming baseball dates. Let us do that now.

Oct. 24-28: The 2020 World Series champions will be crowned on one of these nights, depending on how many games prove to be necessary. The exact date is more important than it seems, because the conclusion of the World Series starts the countdown for free agency.

Five days later: See? Sometime between late October and early November, teams and players will have to make calls on exercising options; teams will have to decide whom to make qualifying offers to; and the free-agent market will open for business.

Dec. 6-10: This is when MLB‘s annual winter meetings were supposed to be held in Dallas, Texas at the Omni Dallas Hotel. It seems highly unlikely that MLB actually holds the meetings, at least as an in-person experience. Expect this to be canceled or reworked into a virtual event.

Feb. 27: Spring training officially begins. You can check out the full schedule here. MLB’s release does note that the schedule is “subject to change,” which is a more ominous clause than it was a year ago.

April 1: And here’s Opening Day 2021. All 30 clubs are slated to be in action, with 10 of the 15 games featuring divisional play. 





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