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MLBPA says players will report for ‘spring’ training on July 1

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Last night, Major League Baseball owners unanimously voted for commissioner Rob Manfred to implement the 2020 season on his (read: their) terms, as per the March agreement with the MLBPA. Today, union representatives and MLB hashed out details.

Per Joel Sherman of the New York Post, the union told the league that the players will be ready to report for “spring” training on July 1. The regular season is expected to begin around the last week of the month, perhaps July 25. The two sides have not yet finalized health and safety protocols but that isn’t believed to be a significant hurdle.

As mentioned earlier, besides the shortened season, the 2020 season will look different due to a handful of proposed rule changes. But, barring unforeseen circumstances, we will see Major League Baseball return next week and the regular season begin in roughly a month. “Spring” training will take place in the teams’ home cities after MLB shut down all of its spring training facilities last week due to a COVID-19 outbreak in Florida.

Joe Kelly’s suspension reduced to 5 games on appeal

Joe Kelly suspended eight
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LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly had his suspension for throwing pitches near the heads of Houston hitters reduced to five games on appeal.

Kelly was originally penalized eight games by Major League Baseball on July 29, a day after throwing a 96 mph fastball near the head of Houston’s Alex Bregman and two curveballs that brushed back Carlos Correa.

The Dodgers on Wednesday confirmed the reduced penalty.

Kelly went on the 10-day injured list retroactive to last Sunday with right shoulder inflammation. He will serve his suspension when he returns.

After striking out Corea, Kelly curled his lip into a pouting expression and exchanged words with the shortstop.

Benches cleared after Kelly’s actions during the sixth inning of Los Angeles’ 5-2 win at Houston in the teams’ first meeting since it was revealed the Astros stole signs en route to a 2017 World Series title over the Dodgers.

Dodgers manager Dave Roberts served his one-game suspension the same day the penalty was handed down. Astros manager Dusty Baker was fined an undisclosed amount.

Kelly denied that he purposely threw at the Astros. He has previously been suspended in his career for throwing at a batter.

The penalties were imposed by former pitcher Chris Young, MLB’s senior vice president of baseball operations, who issued his first ruling since taking over the job from Joe Torre.