MLB ‘pressing ahead’ to host fans for NLCS, World Series

There may be fans in the MLB playoffs. At least that’s commissioner Rob Manfred’s plan for the NLCS and World Series despite the games not being played at the home parks of teams that advance that far.

“We are pressing ahead to have fans in Texas,” he told USA Today Sports. “One of the most important things to our game is the presence of fans. Starting down the path of having fans in stadiums, and in a safe and risk-free environment, is very, very important to our game.”

It does seem like a strange Idea, since fans have not been allowed at ballparks during the regular season due to COVID-19. The NLCS and World Series will be played at the Rangers’ stadium in Arlington, Texas. The ALCS will be played in San Diego.

This week, all players and staff of teams in contention for the playoffs have to stay in hotels and under strict protocols in an effort to avoid contracting the virus. Before family members can join players for the playoffs they will have to quarantine for seven days.

MLB playoffs 2020 World Series fans Rob Manfred
Rob Manfred wants fans at the NLCS and World Series.Reuters

“I think its important we got this bubble thing figured out for the playoffs,” Manfred said. “You’re looking at Europe now having problems, and there are signs we may be looking at a little uptick. But the players all season have shown a ton of discipline. Really, sacrifice is the right word. They’ve done a phenomenal job, the same with the on-field personnel, the managers, coaches, staff, and all of the people that keep the facilities safe and operational.”

Manfred said he doesn’t want a 16-team playoff beyond this season, but he’s open to expanding the normal 10-team tournament to up to 14 teams.