Eleven Umpires on the 2020 MLB Season: We're Out!

Paul Steinbach Headshot

It's an easier call to make for some than others. As reported by CBS Sports, citing additional sources, 11 Major League Baseball umpires have decided to opt out of the 2020 season.

According to MLB.com, there are 91 current MLB umpires, which means roughly 12 percent of the MLB umpiring workforce has opted out. MLB had planned to use 19 full umpiring crews this season, which means a total of 76 umpires. If indeed just 80 umpires are participating in the 2020 season, then that's very little cushion for in-season attrition, routine or otherwise. That said, any number of minor-league umpires are likely available for duty given that the minor league season for 2020 has been canceled.

Veteran umpire Joe West confirmed last week that he will be working during the 2020 season, while also saying he didn't "believe" that the reported number of COVID-19 deaths were all related to the virus. The MLB umpires union issued a statement distancing itself from West's comments.

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