So, it only took a weekend of MLB games for this to happen.
About 40 percent of Marlins active players are now positive for Covid. Heard 11 Marlins players have now tested positive. @JesseRogersESPN and @JeffPassan first reported 8 new ones which would make 12 of 30.— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) July 27, 2020
Okay, so let’s stipulate that the most likely scenario is that somebody on the team contracted the virus while out and about. Miami, after all, is currently a COVID-19 hotspot, and while the thoughts on cancelling sports are ostensibly about protecting the players, the fact of the matter is that your average player is probably in just as much danger from living his life as normal as he is from playing baseball. Now, being around the rest of the team — in the clubhouse, on flights, etc. — increases the risk to other players, but unless you’re living as a hermit, you’re basically in some danger of contracting the virus if you go anywhere outside of your house.
But, unsurprisingly, this revelation has led to... this:
Major League Baseball needs to be suspended immediately. Rob Manfred needs to answer for why he allowed the Marlins-Phillies game to take place yesterday in such dangerous conditions.— Craig Calcaterra (@craigcalcaterra) July 27, 2020
Then, in my view, he needs to resign.
Which begs the question: seriously, just what the hell did people think was going to happen?
Did anyone seriously think that MLB was going to make it through the entire season without a team having a rash of positive tests? (That it happened on opening weekend suggests that, well, this probably wasn’t actually related to playing baseball. Whatever Marlins players had the virus, probably contracted it before they got on a flight to Philadelphia.) If the answer is to shut everything down, then it’s clear that MLB was not prepared for this and it’s not obvious why they would not have been.
That you’re attempting to play a baseball season in the middle of a global pandemic, which the United States (unlike most of Europe; the English Premier League was able to complete its season after a two-month break with no additional issues) has not even come close to getting under control, was taking the risk that something like this was going to happen. And if your response to this is to shut everything down, well, just why the hell did you start the season?
Or, as Buster Olney put it:
MLB and the players' union made the mutual decision to try to play a season this year, and those two entities share the ethical responsibility of pausing, postponing or cancelling if that's what is in the best interests of players and staffers. The Marlins' situation tests this.— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) July 27, 2020
Yeah, it does. But it should have already been accounted for.