Moore: If MLB does bubbles for playoffs, Seattle should be a host
ESPN’s Jeff Passan says MLB is considering holding the playoffs in three hub cities, creating a bubble of sorts, a la the NHL and NBA.
The first round would be held in three cities and reduced to two cities in the subsequent rounds. Presumably the World Series would take place in one of those two cities too.
Chicago, New York and Los Angeles appear to be the most likely hub cities for MLB, but I’d rule them all out and find three more that are more suitable to host playoff games. Chicago, New York and Los Angeles each have an American League and National League team.
Say that the Cubs are in the playoffs. Would it be fair for them to hold playoff games at Wrigley Field? Granted, there wouldn’t be any Cubs’ fans there, but it still seems like their familiarity with Wrigley Field would give them an advantage.
And even if they used the White Sox’s home park, Guaranteed Rate Field, they still would have an advantage, assuming they would be in their own homes and just have a different kind of commute cross-town.
Same holds true for the Yankees and Mets in New York and Dodgers and Angels in Los Angeles.
Pick some one-team cities where the one team looks like it has little to no chance of making the playoffs. Pittsburgh, with its 3-13 record, stands out as one choice.
I’d also look at Buffalo, the 2020 home for the Blue Jays, who are 6-8. And even if the Blue Jays earn a playoff berth, how appropriate would it be in this crazy season to hold playoff games in a minor-league park?
My third choice is the most obvious one. In this city, the team has not been in the MLB playoffs for 20 years. Why not reward their fans by bringing playoff baseball to them, even if they have to watch the games on their flat screens?
Their hometown team is 7-12 and no one in his right mind thinks it has a chance for the playoffs this year. The crew in charge of the home-field atmosphere is one of the best in the big leagues, and think about every seat in the 40,000-seat park being filled for every game, just like in 2001, except for cutouts taking the place of real people this year.
Give those fans a taste of postseason baseball in their own backyard. Bring the playoffs to Seattle.