Major League Baseball told its 30 teams on Tuesday that they can start issuing refunds to fans who bought tickets for the 2020 season as they see fit.
The move by the MLB comes a week after a prospective class-action suit was filed in New York by two Mets ticketholders, demanding refunds of expensive tickets in a time of economic hardship for many. As USA Today reports, the MLB still isn't outright cancelling the season, and contingency plans are still being worked out for a partial season played for TV on neutral ground — possibly in Arizona. But an anonymous MLB official said that the league recognizes that enough time has passed that fans experiencing hardship should see some or all of their money back — especially now that it's logistically impossible for teams to play more than two thirds of their scheduled home games, even if the season were to start late.
The San Francisco Giants haven't yet commented on what their refund policy will look, according to the Chronicle. But reportedly some Oakland A's fans who bought monthly access plans have already sought and received partial refunds.
Up until today, the MLB had been telling teams to treat all lost games as postponements, which would normally result in ticketholders getting credit for makeup games at later dates.
And it could be that Major League Baseball could end up being the hardest hit American sports league due to pandemic lockdowns — though it remains to be seen whether massive football stadiums will be allowed to open in the fall. Both the NBA and NHL had 10 or fewer home dates per team on their schedules when their seasons were suspended in March, as USA Today notes.
Stay tuned for specific updates on refunds from the Giants and A's.
Photo: Jake Weirick