Boston Red Sox Debate: A season with no fans or no season at all?

FT. MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 17: Chairman Tom Werner, Principal Owner John Henry, and President & CEO Sam Kennedy of the Boston Red Sox speak to the media during a press conference during a team workout on February 17, 2020 at jetBlue Park at Fenway South in Fort Myers, Florida. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)
FT. MYERS, FL - FEBRUARY 17: Chairman Tom Werner, Principal Owner John Henry, and President & CEO Sam Kennedy of the Boston Red Sox speak to the media during a press conference during a team workout on February 17, 2020 at jetBlue Park at Fenway South in Fort Myers, Florida. (Photo by Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images) /
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It’s still unknown whether or not we will get any baseball this summer. I asked Red Sox Nation what they would prefer as far as a season is concerned.

Here we are, Red Sox Nation. We’re in the middle of April and not a single meaningful game of baseball has been played in 2020. With things surrounding the coronavirus evolving each and every day, it’s hard to tell when we may see our beloved team take the field again.

I’ve had this debate with friends, co-workers, and family recently and then decided to open the question up to the faithful BoSox Injection readers. Which would you rather have for 2020: Baseball without fans in attendance or no baseball at all? It’s a tricky question and I’ve honestly flip-flopped on it a few times depending on the conversation and the day.

I’ve been one of those that despite there being no new baseball, I haven’t stopped watching. Thanks to MLB.tv and the MLB’s YouTube channel, there is an abundance of full-length games at our fingertips. I can admit though, as great as it is reliving some awesome games in Red Sox history, I’m jonesing for that sweet sweet fresh baseball.

When I opened to question up to the readers I had an idea of where I thought the results were going to go, but definitely not in the landslide manner they did. Fresh baseball without fans in attendance won by a knockout 70% to 30%. I fully understand the want for a new season and new games to be played, it’s normal.

Every spring we’ve been accustomed to seeing the Red Sox take the field like it was a guarantee, and up until 2020, it pretty much has been.

These are some scary uncertain times though. It feels like the news and info we hear about COVID-19 changed almost hourly, let alone daily. That’s why it’s a bit surprising to me that we keep hearing these whispers coming from the league office about their plans of attack for 2020.

First, we heard about the idea to start the season solely in Arizona. Then, we heard about realigning the league to reflect spring training and split the teams between Arizona and Florida. Finally, in what is probably the most insane rumor of the bunch, playing the season in Japan. My belief is that the spring training style season is the most realistic and likely of the recent rumors but as you know, I’m not a fan of any of these ideas.

So, let’s take a look at both sides of the coin and see where this rollercoaster finishes up. I can fully understand those that want them some baseball as soon as possible. Baseball is one of, if not the most, romanticized sports in all of history. There’s something beautiful about a group of folks talking the field with a ball and some gloves and playing the game.

As far as the Red Sox are concerned, for everything that they did this past winter to matter, they need a season. If the league does get underway and games are played for a good portion of the season then the trade of Mookie Betts and David Price will he meant something. I’ll be bringing up Betts again in the counter-argument, so let’s just keep him in our minds.

It’s hard to deny the allure of a fresh season full of hope and promise. We’ve been denied that so far in 2020 and I think all of Red Sox Nation is looking for retribution for the nightmare that was 2019. Again, I’m not surprised that’s where the majority went with the poll and have found myself on that side of the argument many a time.

With that said, let’s take a look at the counter and a season without baseball. As I mentioned above, I have landed on both sides of this argument in recent discussions. When all is said and done, I’d much rather see the league stray to the more precautions side and hold off until things are safe. I know that may get me burned at the stake, but I’d rather the players, staff, personnel, and anyone else that will be involved be kept out of harm’s way.

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If that means holding off on the season until 2021 and letting the landscape clear up and settle done, then so be it. Watching sports without fans in the stands is just a miserable experience, just think of all those Rays games we watch every season. Do you want that for the length of the season? I don’t!

Also, from a selfish standpoint, if the 2020 season gets canceled then Mookie would still become a free-agent and the Red Sox could make a run at bringing back the right-fielder. Just imagine how great it would be to dump Price’s salary and still getting Mookie Betts all the while he never played for the other team. That’s some chef’s kiss stuff.

Again, the big hiccup would be if the season is canceled then the CBT doesn’t reset and basically Boston would re-sign Betts and be back in Luxury Tax hell. So he would never play a meaningful game in another uniform but the Red Sox would be sunk deeper than the Titanic.

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It’s a tough debate as there are pros and cons for both sides of the case. I can see and respect each argument as I’ve made both in recent times. When everything breaks down to the finest of points I simply want everyone healthy. If that means we don’t get a season in 2020 then so be it. Sometimes there are things far more important than baseball.