delays start of season by 'at least two weeks' due to coronavirus pandemic; players react

Baseball has delayed the start of its season.Citing the global coronavirus pandemic, released a statement Thursday announcing that Opening Day, originally slated for March 26, has been delayed by "at least two weeks." Here's part of the release:Following a call with the 30 Clubs, and after consultation with the Major League Baseball Players Association, Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr. today announced that has decided to suspend Spring Training games and to delay the start of the 2020 regular season by at least two weeks due to the national emergency created by the coronavirus pandemic.  This action is being taken in the interests of the safety and well-being of our players, Clubs and our millions of loyal fans.  will continue to evaluate ongoing events leading up to the start of the season.  Guidance related to daily operations and workouts will be relayed to Clubs in the coming days.  As of 4:00 p.m. (ET) today, forthcoming Spring Training games have been cancelled, and 2020 World Baseball Classic Qualifier games in Tucson, Arizona have been postponed indefinitely.MORE: Every sports event canceled because of coronavirus The news comes after teams were scheduled to play normal spring training games today. But after 4 p.m. ET, no further spring training games will take place until the league restarts business. doesn't have an exac

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t time or date when that will be, though.As of now, the plan for is to offer another short spring-training-like period for players to stretch out and get ready for the season again, per The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal.Some players chimed in on the postponement of Opening Day, as well as the coronavirus:Giancarlo Stanton a few minutes ago on the cancellation of ST: "It’s unfortunate but I think it’s the proper measure we need to take now given the situation the country’s in and the world’s in. It’s important to know that some things are bigger than baseball, bigger than sports."— Erik Boland (@eboland11) March 12, 2020“Felt like the most meaningless baseball game in the history of the sport.” — Matt Carpenter on playing a game today. #cardinals https://t.co/ZgHlLtyc1R— Derrick S. Goold (@dgoold) March 12, 2020And there it is..... early questions from players: do we go home now? Stay and train? How/when do we start back up? Have another 2 wk spring then start where schedule picks up? Do we still get paid?... this is wild— Jason Kipnis (@TheJK_Kid) March 12, 2020Max Scherzer when asked about athletes in other sports contracting coronavirus: " I think we’d be kind of naive to think that there’s not one player in any one of the camps across right now that has not contracted it yet."— Jesse Dougherty (@dougherty_jesse) March 12, 2020#Pirates Musgrove: “Were going to be fine. We’re going to continue to prepare. The safety of the fans and everyone else is more important. ... It is a bummer to have it happen at this point, two weeks from the season ... but an extra two weeks to work out could benefit us.”— Rob Biertempfel (@RobBiertempfel) March 12, 2020Andrew Miller: “Sports are important to us, but there’s bigger things in life.” Some players said they didn’t know when they should return to the spring training complex, if at all. said guidance relating to daily operations & workouts will be relayed in “the coming days.”— James Wagner (@ByJamesWagner) March 12, 2020pic.twitter.com/xxUi8IurnB— Pete Alonso (@Pete_Alonso20) March 12, 2020Rhys Hoskins: “This is something we’ll remember for the rest of our lives, something that is kind of stopping the world as we know it.”— Jim Salisbury (@JSalisburyNBCS) March 12, 2020;