"Assuming that a vaccine is not available to players and staff at the beginning of major league spring training, there is a strong possibility that minor league spring training will be delayed for players who otherwise would be assigned to Double-A, High-A, and Low-A because clubs have informed us that there is not sufficient space at spring training facilities for all of the players in an environment requiring strict physical distancing."
If — fingers crossed — the start of the MLB season doesn't get bumped back, it will be the beginning of April before the minor leaguers can begin their own training camp. So, at the very least, everyone will be getting off to a late start. While we can assume that MLB baseball can begin the season with severe restrictions on fans attending games, minor league teams are extremely dependent on gate receipts for their revenues. Are they going to be willing to start their season with few or no fans? These clubs are already hurting from losing the whole 2020 season. Are MLB teams, already crying poverty themselves, willing to subsidize minor league teams in order to get the season underway?
With all of the delays in the vaccine rollout that have happened already, it's hard to guess at what point this year the turnstiles start clicking in both major and minor league parks. With what we know now, it's unlikely to happen anywhere near in time to get any sort of "normal" minor league season going. It was always going to take a lot of hard work and creativity on the part of the new front office to get the Mets farm system from where it is now to where it needs to be to sustain a winning operation. It's going to take plenty of that hard work and creativity just to keep 2021 from being an obstacle to that goal. It wouldn't shock me at all if plenty of MLB clubs don't come up short when it comes to player development in 2021 but, if the Mets are serious about joining the league's elites, they can't afford to do that. This is definitely going to be something to watch in coming months.
I'm signing off for today. Thanks for stopping by. Please stay safe, be well and take care. Let's go Mets!
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