MLB: 30 teams in Arizona to end coronavirus hiatus just a ‘potential option’

first_imgMLB commissioner Rob Manfred was one of several sports leaders who joined President Trump on a conference call Sunday to discuss issues surrounding the current shutdown of sports leagues. But the statement released Tuesday said MLB has “not sought or received approval of any plan from federal, state and local officials or the Players Association.”Approval from the players’ union is just one of many hurdles MLB would have to overcome to put a one-state solution into practice. Given the limited availability of testing for the coronavirus, clearing players and staff from 30 teams before convening in Arizona would be difficult. Scheduling multiple games at open-air ballparks in the 100-degree plus temperatures of a desert summer presents another hurdle. Networks starved for content with sports shutdown would no doubt welcome the return of live games. But staffing and producing those shows from spring training facilities create another set of issues.“The health and safety of our employees, players, fans and the public at large are paramount and we are not ready at this time to endorse any particular format for staging games in light of the rapidly changing public health situation caused by the coronavirus,” MLB said in its statement Tuesday. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error It’s just an idea.Multiple sources reported Monday that Major League Baseball and its players’ union had discussed a plan to start the 2020 season as early as May by moving all 30 teams to Arizona where games would be played in the 10 spring training ballparks there as well as the Arizona Diamondbacks’ home stadium, Chase Field, and possibly college facilities. No fans would be allowed and players would live in virtual isolation — going only from the ballpark to their hotel and back — possibly for as long as four months.Pushback came almost immediately as some players reacted with disapproval on social media. In response to the negative backlash from media as well, MLB released a statement Tuesday morning acknowledging the plan had been discussed but emphasizing the discussions were quite preliminary.“MLB has been actively considering numerous contingency plans that would allow play to commence once the public health situation has improved to the point that it is safe to do so,” the statement read. “While we have discussed the idea of staging games at one location as one potential option, we have not settled on that option or developed a detailed plan.”last_img

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