Report: MLB Postseason Bubble Plans in DFW Beginning to Take Shape
As the NBA and NHL are inching closer and closer to the end of the their respective postseason "bubbles", Major League Baseball is set to embark on their own endeavor. Globe Life Field, the new crown jewel of the Texas Rangers, will be a central figure in MLB's postseason plans that are beginning to take shape.
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Globe Life Field is set to host of the National League Division Series, the NL Championship Series, and ultimately the World Series. Three different postseason series will bring a total of four teams through the 400-acre resort in Las Colinas as they compete in MLB's postseason at the brand new, $1.2 billion home of the Rangers.
According to the report by Fisher, many logistics are being worked out on the fly, "in many ways mimicking what the NBA is successfully staging in its Orlando 'bubble'."
The NBA and NHL have had great success at keeping COVID-19 out of their respective bubbles. At times, MLB has limped on throughout the season with positive COVID-19 tests that have postponed many series, forcing teams like the Miami Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals to play a substantial amount of doubleheaders.
Before the modified regular season was implemented, MLB officials wanted to end the season as originally planned to avoid a potential second wave of COVID-19 cases coinciding with flu season. Given all of the circumstances, including the positive COVID-19 tests and the unpredictability of the virus, MLB made a shrewd decision to centralize the postseason into "bubbles" at neutral sites.
According to multiple reports, key points of MLB's postseason bubble plan are:
- Players on contending teams will have to quarantine at their respective hotels in the final seven days of the regular season.
- Families of players on contending teams will be permitted to quarantine with players for the seven-day period and can remain together throughout the postseason run. Family members would be considered to be part of the bubble.
- Everyone considered to be part of the bubble will be tested for COVID-19 on a daily basis.
- Players can elect to leave their hotels once their team has been eliminated.
Another wrinkle to MLB's postseason bubble will be the growing possibility of fans attending playoff games. MLB commissioner Rob Manfred told USA TODAY that the league is "pressing ahead to have fans in Texas.’’ There have not yet been any announcements regarding ticket sales.
The State of Texas currently permits stadiums to be filled to 50 percent of their capacity. AT&T Stadium, the home of the Dallas Cowboys, just hosted over 21,000 fans for Sunday's game between the Cowboys and Atlanta Falcons.
According to Fisher, MLB and the Four Seasons resort are working together on a number of issues, including meals, security, workout facilities, and entertainment opportunities. Fisher also reports Four Seasons has also committed the entire month of October to this project.