Philadelphia Phillies: Are they the 2020 World Champions?

MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MAY 25: Jake Arrieta #49 of the Philadelphia Phillies pitches in the eighth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on May 25, 2019 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
MILWAUKEE, WISCONSIN - MAY 25: Jake Arrieta #49 of the Philadelphia Phillies pitches in the eighth inning against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park on May 25, 2019 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /
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Depending on how quickly COVID-19 is contained, the Philadelphia Phillies may be the World Champions.

A tweet Mar. 13 by Marley Rivera at ESPN.com started me thinking a little about the baseball desert we are all looking at now – no important games of any sort anywhere, and the remaining unimportant ones before May 1 very likely to be postponed soon. But for many, the worst aspect is the cancellation of real MLB games, even if only temporarily.

However, what Rivera wrote about that was: “Many of the players that I have spoken to believe that the 2020 MLB season will not start until at least the month of May.”

It’s the “at least” part that made me think the baseball desert we’re looking at may not have a green horizon even if we drive through it at 100 m.p.h. for a while.

A few days back I wrote that “a dumpster fire for the MLB season opening could be a real possibility.” Literally the next day Spring Training was cancelled, and the season opener was pushed back at least two weeks.

Maybe I should stop typing…?

I don’t think so. There are no baseball games or college basketball games to watch, dammit!

More Phillies. Three failing amigos and a friend. light

What if the spread of COVID-19 isn’t halted sometime soon? At the moment, everybody sensible has pretty much agreed the number of infections with this disease is still climbing, and the physicians commenting on the matter are very careful to avoid answering any question about when a peak for that will appear.

On Mar. 13 MLB sent the players home from their spring training camps, prompting some to observe that an Opening Day two actual weeks after the originally scheduled start seems unlikely.

But what if it’s worse than that? How vast is the baseball desert we’re looking at?

Could it be that the 2020 MLB champions might turn out to be (drumroll, please) the Philadelphia Phillies and the season is over?

Yikes! Most baseball fans hope that there will be a brief delay in the MLB season’s start, and then we’ll have, oh, a 120-130 game season. Reasonable, right?

These are the people who apparently think viruses are reasonable.

They will have to be coaxed into thinking about the possibility of no more baseball this season and how they will remember the 2020 season. Because there was one. Sort of. And it should be documented.

Before that, however, and I’m sorry, but if there are no more games this season, the Phillies will have to insist they be allowed to hoist a flag for winning the 2020 Truncated MLB Spring Training Crown. It will be the color of French’s Mustard.

French’s yellow is what you get for going 14-5. It’s not quite first-place blue or gold, but it’s within spitting distance.

Years from now, should this scenario come to pass, the team will have reunions and toast the Phillies’ accomplishments of 2020:

There was that two-game span when the extraordinarily expensive Bryce Harper belted three two-run homers. For the record that was Mar., um, and…. Oops, the Philadelphia Phillies website doesn’t actually allow access to that data now, or else I can’t figure out how to get at it.

Also, 2020 will be the year that Alec Bohm broke out. I think. Those numbers are gone too.

And some guys pitched. Sort of. Jake Arrieta strained his shoulder and was walked off the field with a trainer in the season’s last game – as though straining your shoulder needs an escort.

Anyhow, that 14-5 is real. ESPN.com hasn’t scrubbed the numbers yet. The Phillies had a plus-29 run differential. The Toronto Blue Jays were the A.L. Champions. They get a pink flag if need be.

Next. Harper locked and loaded. dark

Anyhow. The parade will be Oct. 1. It will run from City Hall to South Street. Seven blocks ought to do it. Remember to stay six feet apart, and hope there won’t be a baseball desert in 2021.