MLB Not Expecting Baseball Season to be Delayed Due to Coronavirus
Major League Baseball’s 2020 Opening Day is supposed to be March 26
For now at least, The Show will go on as planned.
According to Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich of The Athletic, Major League Baseball and commissioner Rob Manfred expect the 2020 baseball to begin as planned on March 26 despite concerns about the spread of coronavirus.
However, Manfred will be having a conference call today (March 9) with all team owners to discuss the COVID-19 outbreak and possible options the league has to deal with it. In addition to discussing potential responses with the Major League Baseball Players Association, the commissioner’s office has been in touch with the CDC and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
In a memo that was sent out to teams last week, MLB suggested coronavirus containment measures including eliminating handshakes amongst players and not touching balls and pens directly from fans during autograph signings. As of Saturday, public health officials determined there were nine confirmed cases of coronavirus in Florida and five confirmed cases in Arizona, the states where all 30 MLB teams hold spring training.
In a related story, Japan’s Nippon Professional Baseball announced it is postponing the start of its baseball season due to the spread of the coronavirus. The season was supposed to open on March 20 but now, according to NPB commissioner Atsushi Saito, the season may begin some time in April.
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