Following a coronovirus outbreak that infected nearly half of the Miami Marlins roster and prompted a temporary suspension of the team’s season, Major League Baseball players mandated the use of surgical masks instead of clothing, in addition to sports in street cities. I am encouraged not to leave the hotel. Mask and every team are required to travel with a compliance officer during the trip which ensures players and staff follow the league’s protocol properly, sources told ESPN.
According to sources, the updated rules, outlined in a memo distributed to the teams on Tuesday, came as MLB investigated the cause of the Marlins outbreak, with 16 players and two staff members testing positive for COVID-19 , according to sources. The Marlins’ game has been postponed through Sunday, and the possibility of a restart on Tuesday at home against Philadelphia remains in question.
Commissioner Rob Manfred defended the league’s protocol in an interview with the MLB Network on Monday and could strengthen it further in the coming weeks as the results of the Marlins outbreak become clear – especially regarding investigations into contact tracing In. On Wednesday, the league also postponed Friday’s scheduled game between the Toronto Blue Jays and Philadelphia Phillies, the latter of which played the role of the Marlins before the scope of the outbreak on Sunday. The game is set for Saturday, giving Philadelphia an extra day to assess whether the virus was transmitted to any of its players by the Marlins, sources told ESPN.
Nowhere is there a 113-page protocol that explicitly addresses the 2020 season as to how the league would handle coronovirus outbreaks, let alone the magnitude of the Marlins’. It neither provides the threshold of cases to close a team nor a scenario that causes stagnation in the season. For a document as detailed and erudite as MLB’s operations manual, the lack of specificity of the entire cause for its existence – the presence of a global epidemic – has been a spectacular lapse, with many general managers saying that for the season Leading.
This was also done intentionally, with the league demanding flexibility in its actions. The intrusion of the Marlins virus this week proved to be semen, with the lowest figure finally set to fill the stomach without stopping the operation beyond the heart of the outbreak by putting a number on baseball: 18 positive tests, including 16 players – 48 of those traveling % With the team.
From the time MLB committed to keeping its season out of the bubble and sending hundreds of people on the road every day, it was not mandatory, at least there was hope. And yet the amount of Marlins personnel with COVID-19 still shook league officials who expected the outbreak to be half that size. With all the harshness MLB took with its protocol, the virus beat it to one spot in the first weekend of the season.
The result is only the beginning. The Marlins are sidelined for the moment, their return date unclear. They are currently assessing how to fill the roster with a combination of players already in their organization and training at their alternate venue in Jupiter, Florida, and free agents and waiver-wire claims. According to sources, the Phillies played on Sunday, when only four players were reported to be COVID-19 positive, they are expecting their daily tests to return negatively. The Baltimore Orioles and New York Yankees, who should have played as the Marlins and Phillies respectively, started the two-match series against each other on Wednesday. This is epidemic baseball: a schedule is a schedule until it is not.
More important than anything in the short term is how baseball adjusts in the wake of its first outbreak. Manfred stood behind the protocol on Monday, and as the league on Tuesday clearly highlighted that no positive COVID-19 cases were found among the league’s other 29 teams in the last four days, here’s the truth: Players Rules to protect them could not prevent a spectacular outbreak.
According to sources, the investigation is looking at a wide range of factors – from the team’s stadium behavior to wearing masks, social disturbances and other protocol-suggested factors. The league will examine the veracity of players going out at night in Atlanta during Marlins time in the city, especially for games against the Braves. While many of those in the Marlins organization may have tested the protocol by not following it, what happened on Sunday draws more attention to the gaps.
Following positive tests by starter Jose Urena, first baseman Garrett Cooper and right fielder Harold Ramirez, the protocol called for contact tracing – a look at which other players or personnel from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention Guidelines of “close contact” Fall within: According to a copy of the protocol obtained by ESPN, being within 6 feet of a person for 10 minutes.
Only one player, sources said, was in that category after contact tracing: starter Sandy Alcantara, reported by MLB Network, who was among those who tested positive later. The notion that just one player among the 33 traveling team would be subject to a close-contact protocol – quarantine pending the results of a rapid coronovirus test – struck officials from other teams as a possibility. All 30 MLB teams require at least one trained contact tracer from staff, while contact-tracing is overseen by Operation League.
After Sunday’s game, the Marlins were surrounded by the news that the test replaced nine additional positives – seven players and two coaches. On Tuesday, tests showed four more positives on the Marlins, and they were reported another Wednesday. The Marlins were charged with 18 counts, including Joerg Alfaro, who performed a positive Friday test in Atlanta, prompting Manfred to stop his season amid Tuesday’s mounting questions.
Some elements of the protocol are unlikely to change, including testing. Currently, on-field personnel including players are tested through samples of saliva every other day. The sample is sent to MLB’s Utah Lab, where it is usually processed within 36 hours. In case of an outbreak, gaps in testing can be problematic. Sources said that there is no possibility of this being resolved. Sensitivity – or how often a laboratory test produces a positive that accurately reflects the presence of a virus – is higher in saliva testing than in care.
Major changes to the MLB’s protocol may be imminent. After the league has now postponed the games, there is a precedent, sources said, to stop play at the first sign of the outbreak. If it is clear that a cluster can be formed, an official said, the league can stop playing for a team to find out how dangerous the virus is. Of course, according to the CDC, the incubation period of the virus lasts 14 days, it is possible that it may be too late to play to prevent the virus from spreading in the clubhouse.
Following the protocol around baseball has been a point of contention, especially regardless of all of its elements. Players have spent the first week of Tuesday in terms of spitting, high-flying, dogpiling and astros-dodger contests that have ignored social distancing – and, at least at this point, have been coronary-free.
The first extension of the protocol in the memorandum tightens them anyway. Although the league will not mandate on-the-road quarantine, players and team employees will also be discouraged from visiting the hotel’s common areas. On buses, the compliance officer will arrange for a seating chart – and, in some cases, separate groups of friends are preferred to avoid the 6-foot rule, which all along use league surgical masks. Is considered holy The compliant person, who will be designated with the rare Tier 1 credential status given to essential personnel such as players, managers, coaches and training staff, will submit reports and monitor hotels.
Marlins compliance will be the first test case for a person’s efficacy. The team remains in Philadelphia, where it is from Friday and may remain for the future. Currently, the Marlins’ next series is scheduled to begin on Tuesday against the Phillies in Miami. If, instead, the Marlins play that series in Philadelphia, they can fly to New York to face the Mets, then via bus to Buffalo, New York, where the Blue Jays play their home games this season Are planning In that scenario, the Marlins would not return home until their August 14 series against Atlanta, although Miami-Dade County currently requires 14 days of quarantine for those arriving in the city from New York, which are further complicated.
Miami can host three matches against Washington that are scheduled to have two double headers during the future series and are playing in their shared season on 17 September. The Marlins will not play the entire 60-game schedule due to the possibility of how to make their four lost games against Baltimore, an interleague opponent, could prove difficult.
Philadelphia’s double performance Saturday against Toronto showcases baseball’s on-the-fly maneuver. MLB could feature a seven-inning double header this weekend, a possibility previously reported by Athletic. During a season in which the playoffs extend from 10 to 16 teams, a runner starts at second base in extra innings and the Blue Jays play their home game in the United States, a seven-inning doubleheader odd, unpredictable fit. There will be – and, most of all, a fragile – 2020 season that still marches on.