The 2021 Sunday Night Baseball schedule of games through Memorial Day, along with select others, has been released. As long as the season’s schedule is not changed, we now know of 13 nationally televised games on ESPN featuring 11 different teams. With the biggest rivalries and markets being shown off, every matchup is going to have something entertaining to watch. Let’s look through all 13 games and see which are the ones to most look forward to.
Sunday Night Baseball – April 2021
April 4 – White Sox vs. Angels: Sunday Night Baseball opens with an 8:30pm (ET) matchup between the Chicago White Sox and the Los Angeles Angels. While not one of the most exciting games on the surface, this should be a good contest. The White Sox are a young team on the rise with electric players like Tim Anderson and Eloy Jimenez leading the way. As for the Angles, as long as they have Mike Trout, their games are a must-watch for baseball fans. Score: 7/10
April 11- Phillies vs. Braves: Next up is an NL East matchup between the Braves, who were one game away from a trip to the 2020 World Series, and the Phillies, who are looking to trend upwards after hiring Dave Dombrowski to lead baseball operations. Other than seeing two division opponents face-off, nothing seems too striking about this battle. The Braves are an excellent team, but with more Sunday Night Baseball on their schedule, the game against the Phillies is not the best one featuring the Braves. Score: 6/10
April 18 – Braves vs. Cubs: This is where the games get really good. A Sunday night game between two NL division winners is exactly what baseball fans want. Both teams had disappointing playoff exits, with the Cubs falling to the Marlins, and the Braves blowing a 3-1 series lead. That shouldn’t set either team back too far in 2021, and the April matchup should be a great game. Score: 8/10
April 25 – Padres vs. Dodgers: Yeah, this is my number one game. For starters, the Dodgers swept the Padres during the 2020 NLDS, and a primetime showdown is San Diego’s perfect chance for revenge. Then there is the superstar talent of Cody Bellinger and Mookie Betts against Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado. Both teams are full of high energy and don’t follow the “unwritten rules”. Both teams are the future of the MLB and I can’t wait to watch them. Score: 10/10
Sunday Night Baseball – May 2021
May 2 – Mets vs. Phillies: Here’s another NL East battle that could be interesting depending on how the teams are performing. After being purchased by Steve Cohen, the Mets are expected to make splashes during the offseason and begin their ascent in baseball. However, it is still to be determined how long this process could take for a historically dysfunctional organization. The Mets and Phillies have a great rivalry, but for fans outside of the teams’ fanbases, this game is between two teams that finished under .500 last year and might be one to skip. Score: 6/10
May 9 – Phillies vs. Braves: I feel the same as I do about their April matchup. Score: 6/10
May 16 – Cardinals vs. Padres: I’m on the fence about this game because I love watching the Padres, but I don’t know what to expect from the Cardinals. Both teams made the playoffs, but the Cardinals won just 30 of 58 games. St. Louis has an elite bullpen and great depth, but other than Paul Goldschmidt, they lack the star power of other teams. This is still should be a game people want to watch, just not their top priority. Score: 6/10
May 23 – Cubs vs. Cardinals: This is what Sunday Night Baseball is all about. Setting two bitter rivals against each other for all of America to see. Both teams were eliminated in the 2020 Wild Card round and will be pushing for playoff spots once again. Regardless of how good either team is, watching historic rivalries is something baseball fans should never decline. Score: 8/10
May 30 – Braves vs. Mets: To me, this game’s value entirely depends on how the Mets are playing. We will have already seen the Braves on Sunday Night Baseball three times before this, so the Mets become the deciding factor. If New York is competitive in the NL East, this will be a great matchup, otherwise, it doesn’t bring anything particularly interesting to watch. Score: 5/10
Sunday Night Baseball – After Memorial Day
July 4 – Mets vs. Yankees: Oh I love this. Watching the Subway Series is exactly how I want to spend the Fourth of July. Seeing the Mets and Yankees play is always fun because there is nobody that doesn’t hate one of these teams. And watching a team you hate is almost as fun as watching a team you love. Unfortunately for me, the Yankees are going to be really good again this year. There are few better ways to celebrate America’s birthday than watching this game. Score: 9/10
July 15 – Red Sox vs. Yankees: This game is on a Thursday, but I’m including it as part of my Sunday Night Baseball list because it will be nationally televised on ESPN just the same. As the first game following the All-Star break, this is the perfect way to start the second half of the season. Boston was horrible in 2020, and playing the Yankees in front of everyone is exactly what I need in my life. Yes, this score is biased. No, I don’t care. Score: 8/10
July 18 – Red Sox vs. Yankees: I feel so blessed. Not one, but two nationally televised Red Sox-Yankees games as the teams get a true Sunday Night Baseball battle. It is nice to be a part of a rivalry because even when your team is terrible, they still get multiple primetime games. Score: 8/10
September 12 – Yankees vs. Mets: This is the last Sunday Night Baseball game that we know about as of now. It is also the most meaningful. Two New York teams playing baseball the day after the 20th anniversary of the September 11th attacks feels perfect. Be prepared to see the clip of Mike Piazza‘s famous home run over and over and be prepared to get goosebumps every time. This is a game everyone needs to watch. Score: 10/10
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