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MLB Considering Electronic Strike Zone for Social Distance Safety During 2020 Season

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Could MLB return with electronic strike zones? Sources say Major League Baseball is considering a late May or June start to its 2020 season, with all 30 teams playing games at facilities in the greater Phoenix, Arizona area. Social distancing features prominently in a list of possible rules...

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In theory, it would be possible to pull this off - not the strike zone, but "Baseball City".

Make a quarantine zone, inside which only people directly related to the playing and broadcasting of the games are allowed. Prior to entering, the person must be self-isolated for two weeks, checked daily for symptoms. Once the two weeks have passed, the person can enter the zone. If you leave the zone, however, you must self-isolate again for two weeks.

This way, you know everyone there has been cleared and the worry about spreading COVID is minimized to the best extent possible. Baseball can continue as normal (absent fans) and it essentially becomes an Olympic Village for baseball. You'll only need access to 5 fields within the zone, with a max of three games scheduled on each, every day. If you want to give 6 teams an off-day each day, that number can drop to 4.

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6 hours ago, yawetag said:

In theory, it would be possible to pull this off - not the strike zone, but "Baseball City".

Make a quarantine zone, inside which only people directly related to the playing and broadcasting of the games are allowed. Prior to entering, the person must be self-isolated for two weeks, checked daily for symptoms. Once the two weeks have passed, the person can enter the zone. If you leave the zone, however, you must self-isolate again for two weeks.

This way, you know everyone there has been cleared and the worry about spreading COVID is minimized to the best extent possible. Baseball can continue as normal (absent fans) and it essentially becomes an Olympic Village for baseball. You'll only need access to 5 fields within the zone, with a max of three games scheduled on each, every day. If you want to give 6 teams an off-day each day, that number can drop to 4.

I was taking to my brother yesterday, and he brought up a good point. Many players would simply refuse to participate, especially those who have a family and don't need the money. 

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27 minutes ago, Biscuit said:

I was taking to my brother yesterday, and he brought up a good point. Many players would simply refuse to participate, especially those who have a family and don't need the money. 

Cool. I'm sure there's a AAA player willing to play.

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If they're going to play, then the players are going to be in 6' ranges of each other.  Unless we outlaw tag plays or move the catcher back to 1870s setups.  They're either going to have to aggressively treat it like a virtual force field dome like yawetag describes and in that case, include the umpires and who cares if they stand close?

under the dome wiffle GIF

 

I agree there will be a lot of refusal to go to that length.  It's not like a two week road trip; it's like a four month road trip and families didn't sign up for that.  Especially if extended families are at risk on the outside.  The same is true of everyone needed in support--groundskeepers, chefs, hotel cleaners--with the exception that I'll be there are some folks worried enough about paychecks to take the risks and the separation.  But when you count all those people...man, there's going to be someone who breaks containment.  The trash has to leave the safe zone and food has to come in.

In summary, "cockamamie" is word that comes to mind to describe this whole idea.

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... and ideas like this are why I continue to practice social distancing from the product known as Major League Baseball.

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