We’re seeing MLB refining plans for postseason bubbles in Texas and California ballparks, with the American League playoffs in California, the National League playoffs in Texas and the World Series at Globe Life Field.
As we reported in August, MLB was working on a postseason plan along the lines of what the NHL set up for its 2020 Stanley Cup playoffs in two Canadian cities after communicating wit NHL officials about how the sport ran its bubble play. This was one of three scenarios under contemplation. Since then MLB has settled on play in Texas and California ballparks for most of the postseason, setting up aforementioned bubbles and eliminating the thought of play in New York and Chicago/Milwaukee.
The news: MLB is talking with the players association about a California/Texas plan. The AL playoffs would be held in Angel Stadium, Dodger Stadium or Petco Park, while the NL playoffs would be held in Minute Maid Park and Globe Life Field. A final lineup may depend on who makes the playoffs. Right now the Angels are outside the playoffs by 4.5 games, so presumably Angel Stadium would be used along with Dodger Stadium to cut down on travel. The Rangers are in last place in the American League, so presumably there would be no issue using Globe Life Field for the World Series. This plan does not encompass the best-of-three wild-card games, which would be played outside a bubble at home ballparks.
The bubble would actually begin a week or so the regular-season ends, to give time for additional testing and an incubation period. Overall, bubbles have worked well for the NBA, WNBA and NHL playoffs: there have been no shutdowns because of a COVID-19 outbreak in any of the three leagues.