Even more major changes could be coming to the MLB postseason this year.
According to Sports Illustrated’s Tom Verducci, MLB and the players’ union are working toward an agreement in which each of the first three rounds would be played without any off days.
With the playoffs being played at neutral sites within bubbles, which was finalized late Monday night, there is no need for any travel days during the course of a series.
It has not yet been confirmed if this new development was part of that agreement or still being negotiated.
This would mean teams could potentially play three straight games in the first round, five straight in the Division Series and seven straight games in the League Championship Series.
The World Series will still have its two days off after Games 2 and 5.
It is yet another wrinkle to the pandemic-shortened 2020 MLB season, which has expanded the playoff field from 10 to 16 teams and adjusted rules such as seven-inning doubleheaders and starting extra innings with runners on second base.
This would also result in a significant shift in strategy for teams, particularly in the LCS with the prospect of potentially playing seven consecutive games.
Managers may be cautious in overtaxing their relievers, which will put more of an emphasis on starting pitching and starting pitching depth.
Bullpen depth will also remain a major key as teams with deep pens who can afford to give relievers off will hold an advantage.