Blue Jays denied approval to play at home
The city of Toronto won’t be seeing any MLB action at Rogers Centre this season.
After a few weeks of waiting, the Blue Jays were formally denied by the Canadian government in their request to play their home games at home this season. Despite the extremely strict lockdown the team has in place while training in Toronto right now, the announcement isn’t much of a surprise when you consider that the US has yet to gain control over their COVID-19 numbers and the world is starting to ban travel from the US into their countries. Toronto’s schedule has them playing teams normally aligned with the NL and AL East, and with the rising numbers in states like Florida (and their two MLB teams), the Canadians aren’t willing to take the chance of introducing a new batch of potential carriers coming into their country.
The Jays released this statement yesterday:
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) July 18, 2020
So where will the Bluebirds be playing then? At this point, that is still unclear. The obvious choice would be their Spring Training facility in Dunedin, Florida, but with Florida’s virus rate being one of the worst areas in the country, they’re not exactly thrilled with this location. Another option floating around would be in Buffalo, NY, but in order to play there, the stadium would need some serious upgrades before it’s up to MLB standards. There is potential to play at stadiums owned by other franchises that are somewhat near their desired locations, but that would also require some adjustment in order to keep with the MLB coronavirus safety protocols.
The MLB season officially starts this week (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!), and their home opener is scheduled for July 29th against the Nationals, so they have just ten days to decide where that game will be held. Tick-tock, Toronto… hurry up and get your ducks (jays?) in a row.