MLB announces 2020, 2021 schedules

Comerica Park in Detroit is seen during a Detroit Tigers-Kansas City Royals game on September 21, 2018. Photo by Mark Brown/Blackburn News.

The return of Major League Baseball is a step closer to reality.

The league, which includes the Toronto Blue Jays and Detroit Tigers, laid out the abbreviated 60-game schedule for the COVID-19-shortened 2020 regular season on Wednesday. On Thursday, MLB announced the full 2021 regular-season schedule.

All teams are taking part in a reboot of training camp at their home ballparks. MLB had originally planned for teams to play out the season at their spring-training compounds, but recent spikes in COVID-19 cases in Florida and Arizona prompted the league to rethink that plan. The Blue Jays received clearance from the Canadian government to hold its summer camp at Rogers Centre, after it was previously reported that the team may have been forced to use its spring home at Dunedin, Florida due to border restrictions.

The short 60-game season this year will emphasize regional matchups, with teams limiting travel so players, coaches and team staff can remain close to their families. Opening Day is set for July 23, with the world champion Washington Nationals hosting the New York Yankees, and the San Francisco Giants visiting the Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Blue Jays will kick off the season on July 24, with a visit to the Tampa Bay Rays. The Tigers will also start on the road that day against the Cincinnati Reds.

Detroit will open their home season on July 27 when the Kansas City Royals visit Comerica Park. Toronto welcomes the Nationals to Rogers Centre on July 29 to start its home campaign.

The 2020 MLB All-Star Game, which had been scheduled for Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, was cancelled due to the shortened season and ongoing pandemic-related restrictions. Dodger Stadium will host the 2022 Midsummer Classic.

The 2021 season is currently set for a full 162-game schedule for all 30 teams, who are all scheduled to begin play on April 1. The Tigers will host the Cleveland Indians, while the Blue Jays visit the Yankees. Toronto’s home opener for 2021 will be on April 8 against the Los Angeles Angels.

For interleague play in 2021, the Jays will face teams in the National League East division, hosting all NL East teams at various points of the season with the exception of a road series against the New York Mets. The Tigers will take on teams in the NL Central division, hosting all teams except for a road series against the Reds.

The 2021 All-Star Game will be held on July 13 at Truist Park in Cumberland, Georgia, home of the Atlanta Braves.