The 2021 MLB schedule has been announced via press release by Major League Baseball. This despite the fact that the 2020 season, such as it is, has not even begun. This despite the fact that, in most years, the following year’s schedule is not announced until August or sometimes even September. Yet, here it is, in our inbox.
Four the fourth year in a row — at least if you count 2020’s original schedule, as opposed to its modified one — all 30 teams will play on the first day of the 2021 MLB schedule, which is April 1. No early games, no out-of-country games or anything like that. Just a 30-team Opening Day.
That Opening Day will feature 10 divisional match-ups among the 15 games and three interleague games: Tampa Bay Rays at Miami Marlins, Minnesota Twins at Milwaukee Brewers and San Francisco Giants at Seattle Mariners.
Interleague play on the 2021 MLB schedule will, as always, be played throughout the season. Next season it will feature the AL East vs. NL East, AL Central vs. NL Central and AL West vs. NL West. Hey, just like this year! But for different reasons!
As previously reported, the New York Mets will host the Yankees at Citi Field from September 10th-12th as part of MLB’s observation of the 20th anniversary of 9/11. I’ve seen some people question whether that is the sort of thing that should be observed like that, but it’s understandable that they want to do it. As long as it’s tasteful and doesn’t turn into less of an observation and more of military thing or some weird Fourth of July Part Two, it’s probably fine.
Other highlights of the 2021 MLB schedule, as specified in the league’s press release:
The Dodgers will begin their home schedule with a three-game series against the Washington Nationals from April 9th-11th, a rematch of their five-game National League Division Series in 2019. Which is weird as, presumably, there will have been an intervening NLCS since then for the 2020 season;
The Braves will host the Cardinals for four games across Father’s Day weekend from June 17-20, a rematch of their five-game National League Division Series in 2019. Which, again, will have been two seasons removed by then;
The All-Star Game will be on Tuesday, July 13 at Truist Park in Atlanta;
The final day of the 2021 MLB schedule falls on Sunday, October 3, featuring 12 divisional games.
Again, all of this is optimistic given that we don’t even know if they can pull off 2020. And this is rather early compared to what they usually do. Maybe there are reasons for that, but what they are is hard to figure out at the moment.
But, no matter the case, we have a 2021 MLB schedule.
UPDATE: Here’s a hint as to why they did it now:
MLB released the 2021 schedule today, in part, to entice season-ticket holders to roll over their unused packages to next year. Phillies open April 1, 2021 at home vs. Atlanta.
— Matt Gelb (@MattGelb) July 9, 2020