BOSTON (CBS) — The Major League Baseball season has been churning for one full week. It has not gone smoothly.

From Juan Soto missing Opening Day and the week that followed (potentially for a false positive test) to the Marlins suffering a full-blown outbreak to schedule reshuffling to a visiting clubhouse staffer in Philly catching the virus, it’s been a messy week in MLB. That much is true, but the league is hoping to avoid such weeks going forward.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported that the league has made some notable changes to its COVID-19 protocols for teams to follow.

Those changes include:

–An “encouragement” for players to not leave hotel rooms, except for games.

–Mandating surgical masks instead of cloth masks while traveling.

–Adding “compliance officers” to each team to ensure that the protocols are being followed.

“While the league won’t mandate an on-the-road quarantine, players and team staff will be highly discouraged from even going into common areas of the hotel,” Passan reported. “On buses, the compliance officer will arrange seating charts — and, in some cases, separate groups of friends likelier to run afoul of the 6-foot rule, which the league is treating as sacrosanct along with the adoption of surgical mask use for all. The compliance person, who will be designated with rare Tier 1 credential status given to essential personnel such as players, managers, coaches and training staff, will submit reports and monitor hotels.”

Passan said these new protocols were distributed to teams this week, though “larger changes in MLB’s protocol could be near.”


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