MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said Monday that Major League Baseball is concerned about the Miami Marlins’ recent outbreak of COVID-19 cases, but it isn’t yet enough to consider shutting down the season.
Appearing on MLB Network, Manfred said authorities knew that there would be certain positive results and its testing plan was worked to deal with an episode, for example, the Marlins’ – in which an aggregate of 14 players and staff members tested positive.
He said “I don’t put this in the nightmare category,” “We don’t want any player to get exposed. It’s not a positive thing, but I don’t see it as a nightmare. We built the protocols to allow us to continue to play. That’s why we have the expanded rosters. That’s why we have the expanded pools of additional players. We think we can keep people safe and continue to play.”
After the three players had tested positive for COVID-19 on Sunday, the Marlins made the decision as a team to play their game in Philadelphia — raising concerns that MLB’s policies weren’t properly followed. Be that as it may, with the normal season not exactly seven days old, this may be just the first of many crises MLB faces.
Dr. Anthony Fauci said to CNN on Monday that “This is one of the things that could put a halt in the progression of where you’re going through the season,” “Hopefully, they’ll be able to continue and hopefully, this is an outlier that such a cluster of the players and personnel got infected.”
Marlin has postponed their games Monday and Tuesday because of the Baltimore Orioles but Manfred said they would attempt to play at least the two games when the teams are scheduled to play in Baltimore later this week if their players test negative.
Manfred also said that “A team losing a number of players that rendered it completely non-competitive would be an issue that we would have to address and have to think about making a change — whether that was shutting down the part of a season, the whole season, that depends on the circumstances,” and “The same thing with respect to league-wide. You get to a certain point league-wide where it does become a health threat and we certainly would shut down at that point.”
“We expected we were going to have positives at some point,” Manfred said. “I remain optimistic that the protocols are strong enough that it will allow us to play even through an outbreak like this, and complete our season.”