60-game MLB season to start on 23 or 24 July, behind closed doors

60-game MLB season to start on 23 or 24 July, behind closed doors
Players are expected to report to camp on 1 July. A 60-game regular-season schedule was submitted to the players association for approval.

Major League Baseball (MLB) announced that the 2020 season will open in one month, either on the 23rd or the 24th of July. The games will be initially played behind closed doors.

Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement: "We have provided the Players Association with a schedule to play 60 games and are excited to provide our great fans with Baseball again soon."

The announcement followed confirmation that the Players Association (MLBPA) had agreed on the health and safety protocols that will guide MLB's return to play.

MLB said through a press release: "The health and safety of players and employees will remain MLB’s foremost priorities in its return to play. MLB is working with a variety of public health experts, infectious disease specialists and technology providers on a comprehensive approach that aims to facilitate a safe return."

Players are expected to report to training camp by 1 July. The vast majority of Major League Clubs are expected to conduct training at the ballparks in their primary home cities.

Players will undergo COVID-19 testing upon arrival, then begin workouts if they test negative. Players, coaches and support staff will be tested for COVID-19 every other day during training camps, the regular season and postseason. Anybody testing positive will be quarantined. Two negative tests are reportedly required for a return. Players will also receive temperature/symptom checks at least twice per day, and antibody testing will be conducted approximately once per month.

The proposed regular-season schedule will largely feature divisional play, with the remaining portion of each Club’s games against their opposite league’s corresponding geographical division (i.e., East vs. East, Central vs. Central and West vs. West), in order to mitigate travel.