The Blue Jays will not be playing their home games in Toronto this season because the Canadian government doesn't want players traveling back and forth to America, which has been hit much harder by coronavirus.
"There were serious risks if we proceeded with the regular-season proposal of MLB and the Jays and therefore we concluded it was not in the national interest," Canadian immigration minister Marco Mendicino told the Associated Press over the weekend.
So that means as the week of opening day begins, the Blue Jays and teams scheduled to play them on the road this season do not know where those games will take place.
The Phillies' fourth series of the season is a three-game road set against the Blue Jays from July 31 through Aug. 2. Where will it be?
"You kind of think about what are their options and how quickly they can get somewhere ready?" Phillies manager Joe Girardi asked rhetorically Sunday night. "Do they play (their home games) on the road, do those become three home games for us? ... Stay tuned."
The likeliest solution would seem to be Sahlen Field in Buffalo, NY, the site of the Blue Jays' Triple A affiliate. But work needs to be done to that complex to get it up to major-league standards. The Blue Jays' spring training facility in Dunedin, Fla. is another possibility, but the rate of COVID-19 cases in Florida is a concern.
The Phillies will face the Blue Jays more than they'll face any other AL East opponent in 2020. Their other series is in Philadelphia Sept. 18-20, the third-to-last series of the season. It's possible, perhaps, that the first meeting could come in Philly and the second at a Blue Jays road site, wherever it is.
The Phillies have six games with the Blue Jays, four with the Yankees, four with the Red Sox, three with the Rays and three with the Orioles. Baltimore is the only AL East road city the Phillies will not visit, and Tampa is the only AL East team that doesn't come to Citizens Bank Park.
Of the Phils' 60 regular-season games, 20 come against the AL East with 40 against the NL East.
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