MLB MLBPA expanded playoffs
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Report: MLB, MLBPA discussing expanded playoffs

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Jon Heyman reports that MLB and the MLBPA are discussing expanded playoffs following the 60-game regular season. The current idea is to expand the total number of playoff teams from 10 to 16.

Despite back-and-forth negotiations in May and June, the two sides were unable to successfully renegotiate the temporary March agreement, which set into place many of the details for the 2020 season. As a result, commissioner Rob Manfred enacted the 2020 season at 60 games following a unanimous vote from the owners. The playoffs remained the same as in previous seasons.

The owners want expanded playoffs because they will make most of their money this year from postseason TV revenue. There will be no ticket or concession revenues as games will not be played in front of fans. If the union is to agree to expanded playoffs, the owners would likely have to be generous in sharing their profits. Exactly how much of the pie they’ll have to give up remains to be seen.

As Heyman notes, any agreement to expand the playoffs must be made before the 2020 regular season officially kicks off at 7:08 PM ET on Thursday, when the Nationals host the Yankees.

Nationals’ Strasburg ejected for arguing from the stands

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NEW YORK — A pitcher getting ejected for arguing balls and strikes – on his day off? And, from the stands?

Nationals star Stephen Strasburg earned one of baseball’s most unique ejections – probably ever – in the third inning of Washington’s game against the New York Mets on Thursday.

Strasburg was sitting in Section 121 at Citi Field in this socially distant season because he’s scheduled to start Friday against Baltimore Orioles. He was apparently unhappy with the strike zone of plate umpire Carlos Torres after Austin Voth‘s 2-2 pitch to Pete Alonso on the outside corner was ruled a ball.

Moments later, Torres ejected last year’s World Series MVP, though it took a few seconds to realize who had been tossed.

Someone was heard yelling: “You’re (expletive) brutal” shortly before television cameras captured Strasburg doffing his cap as he walked up the staircase on his way out of the park.

“Sorry, folks – sorry, FCC,” Mets broadcaster Gary Cohen said on SNY.

The usually stoic Strasburg appeared to be grinning underneath his blue mask as he made his exit.