MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL STATEMENT
Today Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr. conducted a conference call with the 30 Clubs of Major League Baseball. Following last night’s newly updated recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) restricting events of more than 50 people for the next eight weeks, the opening of the 2020 regular season will be pushed back in accordance with that guidance.
MLB will keep fans updated on decisions regarding plans for the 2020 schedule in the days and weeks ahead. The Clubs remain committed to playing as many games as possible when the season begins. We will continue to monitor ongoing events and undertake the precautions and best practices recommended by public health experts, and urge all baseball fans to follow suit. MLB extends its best wishes to all the individuals and communities who have been impacted by the coronavirus.
MLB AND MLBPA DONATE $1 MILLION TO EMERGENCY FOOD SERVICES
Contribution Aims to Offset Childhood Hunger and Food Insecurity Issues for Vulnerable Populations as a Result of the Coronavirus Pandemic
Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association (MLBPA) today announced a joint donation of $1 million to help fight hunger as a result of school closures and quarantines stemming from the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The donation will be split evenly among Feeding America® (FeedingAmerica.org) and Meals on Wheels America (MealsonWheelsAmerica.org).
Feeding America will distribute funds to local member food banks in high need areas across the United States to help feed children and families impacted by current, and potentially extended, school closures and other disruptions as a result of the epidemic. Meals on Wheels America will use the emergency funds to boost the organizational capacity of the network to provide in-home meals to vulnerable senior citizens during this time of crisis.
“In these difficult times of navigating this pandemic, it is important that we come together as a society to help the most vulnerable members of our communities,” said Baseball Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr. “As an institution, Baseball is extending our commitment to addressing childhood hunger and food availability issues during this crisis. We are grateful for the partnership with our players on this critical issue, which has the potential to deeply affect children and seniors.”
Tony Clark, Executive Director of the MLBPA, said: “In this time of international crisis, players are eager to do their part both individually and collectively to ease the significant burdens placed on the most vulnerable people in our communities. This contribution represents one of those efforts.”
“Feeding America is tremendously grateful to Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association for their commitment to helping children and families in need,” said Lauren Biedron, Vice President of Corporate Partnerships at Feeding America. “Member food banks are committed to helping their communities everyday as well as when disaster strikes. This donation will help people who struggle to put food on their tables during this pandemic.”
“On behalf of the nationwide Meals on Wheels network, I want to extend heartfelt gratitude to Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association for their substantial contribution in response to COVID-19,” said Ellie Hollander, President and CEO, Meals on Wheels America. “It will take all of us coming together to ensure our most at-risk Americans remain healthy, and Major League Baseball and its players have set an example for others by helping us to ensure homebound seniors will continue to receive the meals they desperately need amid this evolving national crisis.”
This joint donation represents an ongoing commitment by MLB and the MLBPA to provide support to causes that assist vulnerable populations, which has historically included financial assistance toward disaster relief and recovery, promoting positive relationship skills & building mental health resiliency grants, and human trafficking prevention.
SPRING TRAINING OPERATIONS SUSPENDED
After an in-person meeting with MLBPA officials in Arizona, Major League Baseball announced today that Spring Training camps will be suspended, effective immediately. Major League players can elect to return home, remain in their Spring Training cities, or return to their Club’s home city. This step is in the best interests of players, employees and the communities who host Spring Training.
MLB will continue to monitor ongoing events and undertake the precautions and best practices recommended by public health experts. We send our best wishes to all the individuals and communities who have been impacted by coronavirus.
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL TO DELAY 2020 OPENING DAY BY AT LEAST TWO WEEKS
Spring Training Games Cancelled As of 4:00 p.m. (ET) Today and WBCQ Games Postponed; MLB Will Continue to Evaluate Ongoing Events and Effects on 2020 Scheduling
Following a call with the 30 Clubs, and after consultation with the Major League Baseball Players Association, Commissioner Robert D. Manfred, Jr. today announced that MLB has decided to suspend Spring Training games and to delay the start of the 2020 regular season by at least two weeks due to the national emergency created by the coronavirus pandemic. This action is being taken in the interests of the safety and well-being of our players, Clubs and our millions of loyal fans.
MLB will continue to evaluate ongoing events leading up to the start of the season. Guidance related to daily operations and workouts will be relayed to Clubs in the coming days. As of 4:00 p.m. (ET) today, forthcoming Spring Training games have been cancelled, and 2020 World Baseball Classic Qualifier games in Tucson, Arizona have been postponed indefinitely.
MLB and the Clubs have been preparing a variety of contingency plans regarding the 2020 regular season schedule. MLB will announce the effects on the schedule at an appropriate time and will remain flexible as events warrant, with the hope of resuming normal operations as soon as possible.
Nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our players, employees and fans. MLB will continue to undertake the precautions and best practices recommended by public health experts. We send our best wishes to all individuals and communities that have been impacted by coronavirus.