Imagine the Angels and Dodgers in the same division? It could happen.
As Major League Baseball continues to explore every possible option in planning for a potential season amid the coronavirus pandemic, a new plan has surfaced that would radically change the divisional alignments and effectively eliminate the American and National Leagues for the 2020 season.
According to the USA Today, a plan is being discussed that would realign Major League Baseball into six divisions modeled after the Grapefruit and Cactus Leagues to allow for teams to take advantage of geographic proximity in the event games need to be played exclusively in Arizona and Florida.
Under the proposed plan, the Angels would play in the Cactus League West, along with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds, and Cleveland Indians.
The division format would place a whole new meaning to the term Freeway Series with the Angels and Dodgers competing against each other in Arizona.
This drastic realignment plan follows a report from earlier in the week that MLB is considering playing the entire 2020 season in Arizona without fans in attendance. The Arizona-only option has received mixed reviews from players, with some strongly against the idea since it would force them to be separated from their families for months over the summer.
Of course, separating teams between Arizona and Florida expands on the plan to keep everyone sequestered within Arizona and the ten stadiums that support Cactus League play, along with Chase field where the Diamondbacks play. Florida offers more facilities, expanding available ballparks to 26, including the possibility of using Tropicana Field and Marlins Park.
However, it also adds another location that would need to be ready to support the logistics associated with playing Major League baseball games, even without fans. Each state and city has unique circumstances to consider in relation to the coronavirus.
As fans reading reports like this one are starting to learn, while every option is currently on the table in the brainstorming room, nothing is viable until public health officials sign off on the plan to allow Major League Baseball to return in any capacity.