We now know that the COVID-19 pandemic may delay the start of the Major League Baseball season until at least June or July. As of now, however, the league hasn’t indicated whether it will postpone the June 10-12 draft or the July 14 All-Star Game at Dodger Stadium, Joel Sherman of the New York Post reports. Meanwhile, the league and the union have been negotiating on payment for the players during this shutdown. MLB proposed “an initial lump payment” to the players to make up for missed checks early in the season, and then the MLBPA countered that offer, Sherman writes. It’s unclear how much progress the two sides have made in those talks, though. The league plans to turn its attention to payment for minor leaguers and stadium and team personnel once it’s through ironing out how to proceed with players who are on 40-man rosters, per Sherman.
- Yankees players have been staying in Florida to work out, but manager Aaron Boone admitted Monday that might not be feasible anymore, Bryan Hoch of MLB.com relays. Boone, whose organization had a minor leaguer test positive for coronavirus last week, acknowledged that “it’s getting more and more challenging” to carry out present plans, adding that he’ll likely return to New York in the next couple days. It remains to be seen whether members of the club will follow suit in returning to their homes, but if they do, Boone’s confident they’ll be able to stay in shape by working out on their own.
- Mariners players have been exiting their facility in Arizona, according to Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times. The M’s are down to 28 players remaining there, and they sent all of their non-roster invitees home.
- Count former Mets general manager and current Athletics consultant Sandy Alderson among those dumbfounded that independent workouts are still going on at all. He expects them to end in the immediate future. “I would be surprised if anybody is in camp after the next two or three days, because No. 1 it doesn’t make any sense from a baseball standpoint, if the season is not going to start until maybe June 1,” Alderson told Mike Puma of the New York Post. “And secondly it doesn’t make any sense in terms of setting an example for the rest of the population to have a bunch of athletes running around playing catch. That does not constitute social distancing.”
- MLB has ceased all scouting activity, both foreign and domestic, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic tweets. That’s hardly a surprising development with just about all sports on hiatus at this point. Even in-home and in-person visits have been prohibited, Rosenthal notes.