But not even the healthy Yankees will be on the field playing games this weekend, as the team’s weekend set with the Mets was postponed due to multiple positive coronavirus tests within the Mets organization.
This is now the second time this season the Yankees have had to remain idle for multiple days, as they faced a similar experience earlier in the season after the Philadelphia Phillies had hosted the Marlins during Miami’s outbreak.
Speaking Saturday, Britton, the Yankees’ Players Union rep, was asked about how the competitive balance can be maintained when some teams are unlikely to play 60 games, while teams also have to deal with gaps in the schedule amid postponements.
“I think overall our schedule has been pretty good. We’ve had two hiccups here where we’re going to have some lengthy delays where we’re not playing. I’ve actually been surprised that we haven’t had more, honestly,” Britton said. “For us as a team, I think things are going pretty well, considering.
“For the competitive balance, I knew that was going to be tricky going into this year. So, if we want to have perfect competitive balance, I just don’t think that’s going to be there this season due to the protocols that we have and guys testing positive and things like that. Our goal is just to try to play 60 games. I think from the union’s aspect and baseball, trying to get 60 games in, and if we all play 60 games then I think it’s fair enough for us to get into the playoffs.
"As for competitive balance like it would be in a normal season, I just don’t think that’s going to be there, so I’m not going to try to compare this season to past seasons. I’m just going to try to look at it as let’s all try to play 60 games if we can, and I think that’s the best that we can ask for in this season.”
The left-hander explained that the union has had discussions about using winning percentage to determine playoff seeding, and while the hope has been that all teams would be able to play a full schedule, that’s now looking less and less plausible as multiple teams have dealt with outbreaks.
“That’s been something that we’ve talked about a little bit, how we would determine seeding and things like that, and I don’t really have a good answer for you,” Britton said. “The goal, obviously would be 60 games, and the teams that don’t to 60 games, yeah, I think you would have to look at the winning percentage to be fair because the reality is that the teams that have had issues, it’s not every player on those teams, and those players deserve an opportunity to get to the postseason as well as anybody.
"I think that, yeah, you might have to look at winning percentage because everyone is sacrificing a lot … It might be something that we can look at. Hopefully we can get in 60 games for every team, but it looks like it might be difficult.”
The 2020 season, of course, is an unprecedented one in so many ways. But aside from following all health and safety protocols, all teams can do is continue to take things one day at a time, something that manager Aaron Boone reinforced when he met with the media on Saturday.
“It’s the world we’re living in and we understand that. It certainly is a little frustrating, especially when we haven’t necessarily been infected with it. But that’s the nature of this,” Boone said. “I think we knew what we signed up for. I think unfortunately now it’s happened to us a couple of times. Doesn’t make it ideal, but we also understand that we have to deal with it. We have to be able to roll with the punches here in 2020, and that’s what we’ll do.”