It's not the end-all, take-it-to-the-bank schedule, but it's the almost-certainly-locked-in schedule for 2011. Among possible foul ups of this released version include:
The D-backs, meanwhile, are less certain at this point about when their regular season will start. Major League Baseball, the Players Association, the D-backs and Giants are formulating what could be a two-game series at Taiwan in late March that would officially open the season for both teams.
Unless that happens, the season will begin Thursday March 31 with five games which I find a welcome relief from the lone late night highlight season opener game. Especially when said game was a terribly typical four-hour snore fest between the Yankees and Red Sox. The earlier start was done so that the playoffs would be scheduled to complete before the calendar turns to November. Kudos on that one, Selig.
The Red Sox do open their home season against the Yankees and MLB.com's Mark Newman had to add that:
For Boston fans unaccustomed to being on the outside looking in during the last month of this injury-riddled season, that new, pure 2011 season can't arrive soon enough.
That struck me as incredibly funny. How quickly the Red Sox as perennial contender became the zeitgeist. You're not the Yankees, Boston. Don't kid yourself.
For the Mariners, they start on the road at Oakland on 1 April and open Safeco on Friday 8 April against Cleveland. The NL East is next season's interleague opponent and so the Phillies and Braves come to Seattle and the Mariners travel to Washington and Florida.
Not that anyone remembers, but before this season began I remarked during a podcast on how many off days the Mariners had scheduled in the middle of home stands. Unimportantly, that number is down to just two for 2011.