San Diego's Petco Park Will Serve As Neutral Major League Baseball Playoff Site

September 15, 2020

Downtown San Diego's Petco Park will play host to a pair of American League playoff series next month under a schedule announced today that will culminate with Major League Baseball's first neutral-site World Series.

The new-format MLB playoff tournament schedule was formulated in response to the coronavirus pandemic, with an eye toward the "bubble" concept being used by the NBA and NHL, which is aimed at ensuring limited outside interaction with players. Under the schedule, Petco Park will play host to a best-of-five American League Division Series beginning October 6. The other ALDS series will be played at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, beginning on October 5. Both series will be played on five consecutive days.  

The winners of the two ALDS series will advance to the best-of-seven American League Championship Series, which will be played at Petco Park beginning October 11, also with no days off between games. For the National League, divisional rounds will be played at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, and Minute Maid Park in Houston, with the National League Championship Series played in Arlington. The best-of-seven MLB World Series will be played in Arlington, beginning October 20, with two off days built into the schedule. The initial round of the MLB playoffs, the best-of-three Wild Card Series, will begin the postseason on September 29 with games played in the home stadium of the higher-seeded team.  

MLB games are being played without fans in attendance due to the coronavirus, but according to The Athletic, league Commissioner Rob Manfred said during an online event Tuesday that he hopes to see some limited attendance at the league's two Championship series and the World Series. Such attendance would involve social distancing and other protection measures, "in terms of temperature checks and the like," Commissioner Manfred said.