Major League Baseball reportedly planning for fans at NLCS, World Series

Ruben Hill
October 18, 2020

In an interview with USA Today, Manfred said the league is keen to allow spectators at the World Series and the NLCS, which will take place in Arlington, Texas next month.

Manfred told Bob Nightingale of USA Today that awaiting approval from Texas Governor Greg Abbott, fans will attend. "Getting started on the path of having fans in the stadiums, in a safe and risk-free environment, is very important in our game".

Last week, MLB and the MLB Players Association reached an agreement on a handful of bubble locations for the upcoming playoffs: San Diego and Los Angeles for the American League Divisional Series; Arlington and Houston for the NLDS; San Diego and Arlington for the respective championship series; and Arlington for the World Series. Players will stay at "team hotels". The team with the best record in each league would receive a first-round bye, while the other two division winners in each league would choose their first-round opponent in the best-of-three-series.

Manfred also clarified comments he made on September 16 about Major League Baseball likely using an expanded postseason format beyond 2020. While Manfred has no interest in continuing with that beyond the current campaign, he is open to expanding the postseason from ten teams to 14 in the future.

"Look, 16 teams was a really good solution for the unique environment we had in 2020", he said.

The expanded 16-team playoffs will cap off the abbreviated 60-game season that was delayed until July because of the coronavirus pandemic.

"The expanded playoffs cover a vast waterfront, but what we discussed was a very different format than we're seeing now". Those plans addressed marginalising the value of winning the division, and preserving the competitiveness through the regular season. "I think the team that comes through proves that they have not only won over all clubs, but have defeated a much bigger challenge in relation to this pandemic".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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