BOSTON (CBS) — On Sunday, the Miami Marlins learned that they had a bit of a COVID-19 problem. On Monday, that problem got a whole lot worse — and it now extends to the rest of Major League Baseball.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that a day after three Marlins players tested positive for COVID-19 to bring the team’s total of positive tests to four, there are now 11 players plus two coaches who have tested positive.READ MORE: Male In Norwood Shot Multiple Times, Taken By MedFlight To Boston Hospital; Police Searching For Gunman
As a result, the Marlins’ game against the Orioles — who just won two out of three in Boston — has been postponed. Additionally, the game in Philadelphia between the Phillies and Yankees has been postponed as well, after the Marlins just spent the weekend in Philadelphia’s visiting clubhouse.
“The members of the Marlins’ traveling party are self-quarantining in place while awaiting the outcome of those results,” MLB said in a statement. “Major League Baseball has been coordinating with the Major League Baseball Players Association; the Marlins; the Orioles; the Marlins’ weekend opponent, the Phillies; and Club medical staffs, and will continue to provide updates as appropriate.”
Updating the Miami Marlins’ outbreak: The total number of infected players is 11 of the 33 who have been traveling with the team and two coaches, sources tell ESPN.
The Marlins-Orioles and Yankees-Phillies games tonight have been postponed. For now, the rest may be played.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 27, 2020
Jesse Rogers of ESPN reported that some of the cases involve players or coaches showing symptoms of the infection, as well.
Also hearing not all cases are asymptomatic https://t.co/05RGNlw0NqREAD MORE: Allegiant Airplane Blows Out Tire After Rough Landing At Logan
— Jesse Rogers (@JesseRogersESPN) July 27, 2020
The Marlins became a fairly large story on Sunday when three players learned that they had tested positive. Despite that major increase in positive tests, the Marlins still took the field against the Phillies, winning the game 11-6 to improve to 2-1 on the year.
The Marlins did not fly home to Miami after that game, instead spending the night in Philadelphia to await their test results.
The postponement of the two games in Miami and Philadelphia was a necessary first step in managing the situation. Yet what MLB decides to do going forward could have massive implications for the entirety of the 2020 season. For example, with the Yankees set to visit Philadelphia on Monday night, MLB decide it would be best for the Yankees to not use the same clubhouse which the Marlins just used over the weekend — not without extreme sanitation, at least. At the same time, the Phillies might be considered at added risk of infection, having just played three games against a team where 11 players and two coaches have tested positive.
The Marlins themselves also present a bit of an issue, both for their place in a Philadelphia hotel while infected and the travel restrictions that would seemingly apply to them after having had close contact with so many teammates and coaches who have contracted the virus.
A team as distant as the Red Sox could end up being affected if MLB doesn’t take any extra precautions, as the Red Sox will be playing against the Yankees in New York next weekend. That’s just one example of how the outbreak can wreak havoc throughout the league if it is not contained carefully at this exact point.
One unnamed executive told The Athletic over the weekend, “this whole thing has the makings of MLB’s worst nightmare.”MORE NEWS: Thousands Honor Slain Danvers Teacher Colleen Ritzer At Annual 5K In Andover
Canceling games in a season where there’s not much time to make up games is certainly not ideal, and if the cancellations end up being widespread, it puts the entire 2020 MLB season in peril.