One of the biggest story lines in MLB history was the Astros cheating scandal. That shows the magnitude of the coronavirus crisis, seeing as how the Astros news has been completely out of the news amid the much bigger problem affecting the entire realm of sports.
Now, the two story lines are intertwined into what could be quite a controversial situation. Due to the wording of Rob Manfred's punishment, as Buster Olney brought to light Thursday morning, the suspensions will come to an end "following the completion of the 2020 World Series."
Because there's no specified game limit that the Astros staff must fulfill in order to complete their suspension, they could foreseeably serve their time throughout a season where no games are played at all. Clearly, this could enrage MLB fans that were seeking some sort of retribution for the cheating scandal that completely stunned the baseball world.
Opening Day has already been moved back, and there's no definite return date established yet. Seeing as other leagues like the NBA are preparing alternate plans based on the possibility that the remainder of the season is canceled in its entirety, MLB players have also been concerned about how such a major decision would affect their salaries, their service time and numerous other issues.
Because the aforementioned official wording states that the suspensions will have been served after the 2020 World Series, it's worth thinking about what would happen if the 2020 season, along with the postseason and the World Series, was completely scratched. Would they have served their punishment if the required ending event had never even occurred?
Of course, this is the worst-case scenario, but seeing as more and more news comes out everyday in regards to the illness, nothing is out of reach right now.