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Major League Baseball’s response to COVID-19

by Brenna DeLucia

In response to the coronavirus, COVID-19 pandemic, Major League Baseball (MLB) decided to suspend all baseball operations. The MLB announced that all spring training games are cancelled as of Thursday, March 12. At that point in time, the regular baseball season was only postponed for two weeks, but with the coronavirus spreading so rapidly and becoming more severe, it is rumored that MLB won’t start playing games again until June.

On Friday, March 13, the MLB announced that spring training camps have been suspended and all major league players have the option to return home, remain near wherever their spring training site is, or return to their team’s home city. Though, the New York Yankees voted unanimously to remain in camp. 

While the Yankees decided to remain at their spring training location in Tampa, Florida, an unnamed Yankees minor leaguer became the first MLB-affiliated player to test positive for Coronavirus. As of today, there are only three known cases for COVID-19 in professional baseball, according to ESPN.

Major League Baseball owners agreed to a deal where players will be paid $170 million in salary in advance over the next two months while baseball is suspended, according to NPR.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of America, MLB’s official charity partner, is helping their communities during this pandemic by providing important services to those in need. The Boys & Girls Clubs are preparing and delivering meals and support to families of medical workers. A total of $1 million has been donated to Feeding America and Meals on Wheels by MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association. MLB is also helping to support their ballpark employees, as they announced a 30-Club, $30 million effort to support emergency relief for the workers. 

“Major League Baseball extends its best wishes to all the individuals and communities who have been impacted by the coronavirus,” as stated on MLB.com.

Brenna Delucia can be reached at brenna.delucia@spartans.ut.edu

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