Wild Details of MLB-MLBPA Season Agreement Revealed

Terms of the 2020 MLB season were finalized on Tuesday.
Terms of the 2020 MLB season were finalized on Tuesday. | Will Newton/Getty Images

A gut-churning negotiation process between MLB owners and players finally concluded on Tuesday as commissioner Rob Manfred was ultimately forced step in and impose a 60-game schedule for 2020.

As the details surfaced, it became abundantly clear that this truncated season is going to be markedly different than what baseball fans have grown accustomed to throughout the years, so it's only right that we dive into all the details.

As far as the schedule is concerned, each team will play 10 games against the other four teams in their respective divisions. The remaining 20 fixtures will be comprised of interleague matchups against the corresponding division from the other league, which brings us to the rule changes.

There will be a universal DH in 2020, which has long been reported as part of the blueprint, and figures to be a polarizing subject for National League apologists. It pains us to report that MLB has elected to take a page out of the Minor Leagues' playbook and will start every half-inning in extras with a baserunner on second.

In terms of key dates, the transaction freeze will be lifted at noon on Friday. Additionally, clubs are obligated to submit 60-player rosters for Spring Training by Sunday at 3 p.m. ET. The trade deadline is set for Aug. 31, and the active roster deadline for playoff eligibility is Sept. 15.

It also appears there will be groups of roving, unsigned players clustered together, serving as sort of an all-hands taxi squad.

Now, it's time for the safety protocols.

Per ESPN's Jeff Passan, both spitting and pitchers licking their fingers is prohibited. Instead, hurlers will have the choice of carrying a wet rag in their pocket to lubricate their fingers in between pitches. Players will also need to forgo high fives, fist bumps and hugs, all of which are forbidden.

The possibility of fights and benches-clearing brawls is something MLB is taking very seriously, and players who incite such things will be dealt "severe discipline."

Players, coaches and staff will be tested for COVID-19 before arriving for Spring Training 2.0. During camp and beyond, they will undergo testing several times per week, and results are expected to be back within a 24-hour timeframe.

That's pretty much the crux of the agreement, folks. It's going to be a difficult adjustment for everyone involved, but at least fans can say that baseball is back. Let's cross our fingers that the coronavirus doesn't throw a wrench into this long overdue compromise.