Major League Baseball has been discussing a number of ways to get the baseball season up and running despite the pandemic. WGBH News' Morning Edition host Joe Mathieu spoke with The Athletic writer Jen McCaffrey about what this season of baseball could look like, if it ever gets off the ground. The transcript below has been edited for clarity.

Joe Mathieu: I hope that you've been well, and I'm sure you've been missing baseball. So MLB threw out this idea of having a select number of teams quarantined in Arizona and playing basically a truncated season there. It seems they've moved on to a broader approach at this point. What do things look like?

Jen McCaffrey: Yeah, there's been so many different scenarios that have been thrown out over the past couple of months since this has all come about. One of the latest ones that we've seen from USA Today, reported this past week, [is] basically every team would play at a home park, but instead of an American league and a National league, there would be three weeks of 10 teams each among the 30 teams. It would be geographically split, sort of like it is now, but even more so, so teams wouldn't have to travel as much. And this would begin late June, early July optimistically, so they could squeeze in about 80 to 100 games and play into October with a post-season in November. It's sort of contingent upon testing and having testing available. This would also be — especially in the very first few weeks and probably the first couple months into September — I would assume with no fans in the stands or a very limited number of fans in the stands spread out with masks, testing, temperature takes and all that. It's a preliminary plan that they're laying out, but it's something that they're talking about. It obviously needs medical approval, and they need the CDC to sign off on things like this, but they're really trying to find a way to make this work and I think over the next month or so we'll start to see more traction on whether or not this is feasible or not.

Mathieu: How do you eat a Fenway frank with a mask on? Better yet, how do you scream at home plate with a mask on?

McCaffrey: There are so many small details from those kind of things all the way up to the players spitting in the dugout. That's not going to be allowed anymore or are they going to give fines on things [like] high-fiving? They don't want players high-fiving anymore. Obviously there's major health ramifications here, but there's also these minor things that you don't even really think about that are part of everyday life that are going to have to be adjusted.

Mathieu: Well, that's for sure. So you just said a lot there in laying out this scenario, and I want to ask you about a couple of things you said beginning with the timeline itself. It wouldn't allow a lot of time to train. Is it realistic in such a truncated season to have players up and physically ready?

McCaffrey: So that's one thing that's been really discussed in these past few weeks of what their readiness is going to be. Guys have been training at their home wherever they are, spread out around the country and really around the world. But of course, it's not the same. You don't get the same adrenalin rush or just even being around your teammates ... for training. Guys have been keeping their arms fresh and swinging and all that kind of stuff, but if this plan gets off the ground and they start in July, they'd probably start some sort of spring training in early June, so they'd have about three to four weeks.

Spring training is usually six weeks, so it would be about half the amount of time. They're hoping that since guys have already been trying to keep fresh in the meantime that they wouldn't need as much time to get ready, but especially it hurts the pitchers because of their buildup. The way a guy builds up over the course of spring training and the number of pitches he throws every five days is kind of something that they've put a lot of science into in terms of how arms bounce back and the durability there. Also, if the season gets off the ground, you might see a lot more injuries just because guys are rushing more or less into a season, so you've got to factor that in as well.

Mathieu: Just what the Red Sox need now. Also testing, as you mentioned. There would have to be a very massive and quick turn program to basically test the entire major league.

McCaffrey: Yeah, and one of the things we found out recently was that MLB was part of a big testing case study. It was about two or three weeks ago. A lab in Stanford, California, was trying to use a massive amount of people for COVID testing. Obviously there's thousands of people in baseball and they wanted to get a broad subset of people. But it's also people that work for teams, not just the players themselves. So they've already been involved in something on that scale, but of course, testing would have to be much more frequent and wouldn't want to take away from public facilities, as well. Of course, one of the big issues right now is the number of tests available. A lot of those factors you'd have to consider, as well.

Mathieu: Who would've thought we'd ever be talking about this? You mentioned playing without fans. I saw in The Wall Street Journal the league in Taiwan is putting cardboard cutouts of fans in the stands just to make players feel like something's going on and make it look like something on television. I can't imagine how the players would feel about this here.

McCaffrey: It's actually pretty fascinating to watch. The Chinese Professional Baseball League has been underway for a few weeks now, and [it's] really the only sport that's going on in the world. They obviously were able to [tamp down] the virus, so they've been able to get their season off the ground and they've been playing, but with no fans in the stands, kind of like these robotic voices that are pumped into the stadium. It's kind of interesting to watch. You can catch some of the games on Twitter that are streaming. They're setting a template for a lot of other teams. The Korean Baseball League is supposed to be starting up next week as well. I think the more these teams in areas of the world that are a little bit more contained [and] the more these leagues start getting off the ground, they'll be providing more of a template for how things can potentially get started here once things get under wraps a little bit more.

Mathieu: Whatever it is, it's going to be weird. We learned this week, Jen, that anyone who bought tickets to April and May Red Sox games will get reimbursed or be able to swap for different games. Are they going to go month to month here, you think?

McCaffrey: I think so, especially if they are as optimistic as they seem to be about this plan getting off the ground in June. They're losing millions and millions of dollars of revenue, so they're going to be holding onto their money as long as possible. But right now, fans can get refunded for April and May games.