Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred is hoping fans will be able to attend the sport’s League Championship Series and World Series.
"I'm hopeful that the World Series and the LCS we will have limited fan capacity. I think it's important for us to start back down the road,” Manfred said during a virtual panel conducted by Hofstra University’s business school that were reported by The Athletic and CBS Sports.
Manfred said the plan would be to limit numbers and implement social distancing protocols.
“Kind of the pods like you saw in some of the NFL games,” he said. “We'll probably use that same theory. But I do think it's important as we look forward to 2021 to get back to the idea that live sports, they're generally outdoors, at least our games. And it's something that we can get back to."
MLB and its players’ union agreed Tuesday that the expanded postseason which will be played at neutral bubbles in Southern California and Texas, while the World Series will take place at the Texas Rangers’ new stadium in Arlington.
Manfred also said that a number of the changes MLB has made for this extraordinary season may remain beyond 20201, including the expanded 16-team postseason.
Manfred said that the universal designated hitter in both leagues has softened, and the new extra-inning rule – each half-inning begins with a runner on second – has also been well received.
“One of the few good things about [the pandemic] is it has provided an opportunity to try some different things in the game on a one-year basis that I think has been a positive overall,” he said.