July 26, 2021

Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball Sets June 19 Opening Day (MLB Trade Rumors)

Baseball is set to return in Japan. As Kaz Nagatsuka of the Japan Times reports, Nippon Professional Baseball commissioner Atsushi Saito announced Monday that the league plans to kick off its regular season on June 19 — nearly three months after the originally scheduled March 20 date. As has been the case in Taiwan and South Korea, where their top leagues are already underway, games will begin without fans in attendance. NPB teams will aim to play 120 games in their condensed season, which represents a reduction from the 143-game norm.

NPB has yet to formally release its schedule or its health/safety guidelines, although Saito made clear that the Japan Series — NPB’s championship series — will still be held. Other changes to the postseason format in Japan’s 12-team league are still possible, although commissioner Saito indicated the matter is still being discussed. Eliminating extra-inning play in 2020 is also under discussion, per Saito. (Ties are already possible in NPB in games…

Read “Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball Sets June 19 Opening Day” at MLB Trade Rumors