WHAT’S BEING CLAIMED:
- Some MLB players decided to opt-out of the reopening of the league’s 2020 season because of the pandemic.
- Ian Desmond of Colorado Rockies also cited the rising racial tensions in the U.S as one of his reasons to skip the rest of the season.
- Other sports leagues have also canceled their seasons amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
Several professional baseball players have chosen not to participate in the deferred Major League Baseball season due to health risks amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.
On Monday, Washington Nationals confirmed that its pitcher Joe Ross and infielder Ryan Zimmerman would not participate in the 2020 season.
As told by his agent, Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Mike Leake also opted out in playing for the incoming season.
On Monday night, outfielder for Colorado Rockies, Ian Desmond, published a note on Instagram that he will not be seen playing this season. Desmond, a 34-year-old biracial American, cited continuing racial conflicts in the U.S and the outbreak as the reasons for his decision, adding that the crisis made the season risky.
Desmond added that the best place for him at the moment is with his family.
The recent development was only a week after Major League Baseball confirmed its season would commence a month from now after the epidemic overturned the first timetable.
Nationals General Manager Mike Rizzo said in a written statement that their players, Joe Ross and two-time All-Star, Ryan Zimmerman, have decided not to partake also in the 2020 season for similar reasons. He added that while they miss the player’s contribution to the team, the management supports their decision.
Leake also echoed the same sentiment as his reason no to play this coming season.
His agent, Danny Horwitz, confirmed to CNN that although the decision was hard for Leake, his health and family are the most important for him, adding that he would love to play again in 2021.
Their decision is a result of the rising COVID-19 in the U.S.
Other sports associations have postponed their seasons due to the same safety reasons.
Los Angeles Lakers guard Avery Bradley confirmed to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN last week that he will let this season finish without joining the remaining games.
Executives from many MLB teams last week confirmed that there are coronavirus cases within their organizations.
The announcement was only a day after MLB said the 2020 season would commence on July 23 or 24 with a 60-game schedule.
Typically, all MLB teams each play 162 games for both the whole season and postseason. But because of the health crisis, the 2020 MLB season did not start in March or April.
The league’s players and staffers are to report to their corresponding teams by Wednesday. Clubs are also allowed to start full routines on Friday with Opening Day cups on either the 23rd or 24th of July.