MLB, NHL & MLS Suspend Seasons Amid Coronavirus Pandemic


In keeping with the response from other major sports organizations like the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League, Major League Baseball has suspended the remainder of spring training amid the coronavirus pandemic. As it now stands, the earliest date for Opening Day will be April 9.

Players with big league contracts likely will be allowed to leave spring training and go home if they want to, but no decision on that was made public.

There will be a point at which Major League Baseball simply can not coordinate new/modified plans, and will instead have to announce a period of crowd-less games, or simply delay the start of the regular season. A game between the Cardinals and Marlins in Florida began as scheduled.

The start of baseball season has been delayed before, back in 1995 when players were coming off the strike that wiped out the end of the 1994 campaign.

This year marked the earliest opening day other than for global games. The Giants announced they will not play a March 24th exhibition game against the A's at Oracle Park.

In the same Rosenthal story, former Cubs manager and new Los Angeles Angels skipper Joe Maddon said it might be best for baseball to take a month off and allow the world to "hit the reset button".

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But she added she was anxious about her 84-year-old mother who was staying with her and began to cough on Tuesday. Matt Hancock, the health secretary, tweeted: "Really sorry to hear Nadine has tested positive for coronavirus ".

The MLB, however, has not had any confirmed cases in regard to players or staff.

"This contract is subject to federal or state legislation, regulations, executive or other official orders or other governmental action, now or hereafter in effect respecting military, naval, air or other governmental service, which may directly or indirectly affect the player, club or the league", it says.

Baseball had originally planned to attempt to continue to play games, but events over the last 24 hours - including a wide-ranging global travel ban - made the decision inevitable.

"The Pirates are in full agreement with and supportive of the Commissioner's decision", Pirates chairman Bob Nutting said in a statement.

Spring Training games have been cancelled, and 2020 World Baseball Classic Qualifier games in Tucson, Arizona have been postponed indefinitely.