We might as well get out of the way that the United States reaches an all-time high in daily cases. Regardless of the myriad of circumstances that may have led to this statistic, it is still very concerning. Our neighbors over at Disneyland delay reopening. I hope all the players, coaches, umpires, staffers, TV crews, and necessary support needed to run the season stay healthy. I hope everyone stays healthy.
The trade deadline for the year will be August 31. I sincerely wish that no player gets traded in the middle of all this and has to uproot his family. Trader Jerry, you’ve been warned…
Roster rules will be very complicated. Teams can start out with 30 on the active roster, but that drops off to 28 after a few weeks…of course, there’s the 40-man roster with which we’re all familiar…I wonder if they’ll just travel with the team. And then there’s a “taxi squad” that allows the total number of available players to reach 60. Apparently, the players on the taxi squad will be sequestered and will get MLB meal money, although they will not get service time and will be paid minor league wages…
The Angels might go with a 6-man rotation. Shohei Ohtani is back to healthy, and after all the uproar about him delaying TJ surgery to win the AL Rookie of the Year award, he will seemingly not miss any extra time. Just dreaming about an Ohtani MVP award…Felix Peña and Griffin Canning are also healthy. I assume Max Stassi is ready to get on with the framing too…who knows, in such a short season, Stassi could slug .600 and win league MVP with his amazing defense–Vegas, get me those odds!
Fangraphs projects the Angels to finish 30-30, with a 16.6% chance of winning the division and a 32.4% chance of making the playoffs. With a decently hard schedule (no Central teams or Baltimore on which to feast), the Angels will have to play good ball the whole way to have a shot. Still, these playoff odds are a 13.5% increase from what Fangraphs had them at in February.
Yes, the runner-on-second-in-extras rule is terrible. Not sure who likes it. It’s still happening.
Emma Baccellieri wonders about a possible bubble in which to hold the season. It’s probably important to note that although the players and owners have agreed, the situation is still fluid, and COVID-19 could conceivably shut the whole thing down again. No one needs to die for baseball.