In an apparent bid to prove they’re capable of playing games in non-communist countries as well, Major League Baseball has targeted 2018 to play a regular season game in England.
Commissioner Rob Manfred told the AP earlier this year that MLB wanted to play a game in London in 2018, so interest on the part of the league has existed for a while. Now, the Boston Herald reports that the Red Sox and the Yankees might make the trip.
According to the Boston Herald, “The idea of playing a series between the historic franchises in Greenwich Mean Time has been under discussion for the last two years by Red Sox owner John Henry and Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner.
“Now, with the ratification of a new collective bargaining agreement that spells out a commitment from MLB and the players to competing in multiple international destinations, and only one named city — London — talk of a Red Sox-Yankees matchup is turning more serious. What does appear to be a done deal is that the Red Sox, as well as the Yankees and probably the Mets, are going to wind up playing in London at least once over the five-year span of the new CBA.”
The NFL has markedly increased their European footprint over the years, to the point where the league regularly draws large crowds and buzz whenever they play in London. Surely a country so enamored with cricket would prove itself fertile ground for MLB’s European expansion as well.
Unlike the NFL though, who will send the likes of the Browns, Rams, and Jaguars to London next year, it appears MLB is willing to send their best teams with the Red Sox, Yankees, and Mets among those slated to play in London.
Follow Dylan Gwinn on Twitter: @themightygwinn