Hello folks and happy Saturday! While MLB and MLBPA continue to argue over the financials of a season, coronavirus is on the rise around the country again, reminding people that there are more than one hurdles to clear for baseball to return. Let’s get to it.
In Mariners news...
- Mariners second rounder Zach DeLoach spoke to Shannon Drayer about his swing change that helped transform him as a player.
Around the league...
- Some unfortunate news from Phillies camp: 8 players and coaches have tested positive for coronavirus. This could certainly be a problem for the league even if there’s a financial agreement in place.
- And already one other team responds.
The Toronto Blue Jays on Thursday shut down their spring training facility in Dunedin, Fla., after a player exhibited COVID-19 symptoms, sources tell ESPN.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 19, 2020
Dunedin is just up the road from Clearwater, where eight people in the Philadelphia Phillies organization tested positive.
- And another one.
BREAKING : The Astros recently had one player test positive for COVID-19 at the team’s facility in West Palm Beach, Fla.— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) June 19, 2020
“The silver lining is we followed procedure and there were no other positive tests,” GM James Click said.
- It is extremely frustrating to watch MLB completely botch the COVID response and to not be prepared for this to happen.
Source: with 3 camps having to close today due to COVID-19, MLB is strongly considering closing all 30 camps again to cleanse and re-establish a system in which players will test regularly when they return. Right now there is not a firm protocol for players using the facilities.— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) June 19, 2020
- Eventually, the league responded by closing all spring training complexes in the league.
- The Twins have announced the removal of a statue dedicated to a former owner, who made racist remarks about the team’s location.
- In a response to Jo Adell’s comments about scouting reports coded in racist ways, Baseball Prospectus made a public pledge to be better.
- The San Diego Padres have pledged aid to black-owned businesses in honor of Tony Gwynn.
- MLB and MLBPA’s discussions appear to include a few other significant rule changes.
The reason for the 2nd base rule for extra innings in 2020 is to limit time at the ballpark together for player safety and not tax rosters in pandemic. Don’t love rule generally but makes sense in pandemic. https://t.co/Rw7DfTodct— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) June 20, 2020
- Among Baseball America’s list of the top 20 undrafted free agents, the Royals really took home the bacon.
- In a very obvious stalling method to ensure the players have no other choice...
MLB has told Players Association it will not make a counter-offer to union’s 70-game proposal, sources tell me and @EvanDrellich. League talking with owners this weekend to discuss its next options moving forward. Last MLB offer: 60 games. Could try to implement in 50-odd range.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) June 19, 2020
- They really didn’t have to do this.
Former Cubs SS Addison Russell is finalizing a one-year contract with the Kiwoom Heroes of the KBO, a source familiar with the deal tells ESPN. Russell, who was non-tendered by Chicago last year after serving a 40-game domestic-violence suspension, should soon be in South Korea.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 20, 2020
- Jay Jaffe says that whether or not there’s a season this year, the universal DH may be a permanent fixture.
- Katie Barnes at ESPN wrote about Maya Moore’s personal journey for justice.