Friday’s Cards-Crew game pushed to Sunday

July 31st, 2020

MILWAUKEE -- Major League Baseball postponed Friday’s Cardinals-Brewers game at Miller Park due to two positive tests for COVID-19. The game, which was to be Milwaukee’s home opener, is scheduled to be made up as part of a doubleheader on Sunday.

The two positives, both from Cardinals players, stemmed from testing on Wednesday prior to the finale of the club’s two-game series at Minnesota. The Cardinals said in a statement that they learned of the results late Thursday and instructed players and staff to self-isolate in their Milwaukee hotel rooms until further notice. The team did not leave its hotel for Miller Park on Friday.

The Cardinals and Brewers are scheduled to play at 6:10 p.m. CT on Saturday, with the doubleheader set to begin at 1:10 p.m. CT on Sunday. Both games in the doubleheader will be seven innings.

“It’s obviously not ideal," Brewers outfielder Ryan Braun said. "We would love to be playing today, but we think the most important thing is completing the season, so it certainly feels like the most prudent decision to not play today. We don’t know what that means for the rest of this weekend yet, but as we’ve done from the beginning, we can only continue to take it day to day and see how things play out.”

The Cardinals had an off-day in Milwaukee on Thursday and did not work out at Miller Park, though some coaches and staff members did visit the stadium to do advance work. Brewers visiting clubhouse personnel were also being tested on Friday.

Brewers principal owner Mark Attanasio said he received notice from MLB on Thursday night that “something might be going on,” and an early morning call on Friday from Brewers president of baseball operations David Stearns confirmed it. Stearns had already been in contact with his St. Louis president of baseball operations John Mozeliak, and the Brewers assisted in coordination with Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin to begin immediately testing Cardinals players and staff at the team hotel.

Meanwhile, Braun and Cardinals pitchers Jack Flaherty and Adam Wainwright were communicating to get on the same page in terms of players’ views of how best to proceed.

“How we all handle the coronavirus is a challenge not only for baseball and finishing the season,” Attanasio said, “but it’s a challenge for all of us. We’ve all had to change our lives. We’re all committed, I believe -- and I’ve talked to a number of players today -- to finishing the season. So the question is, ‘How best to proceed so we can see the season through?’”

Attanasio added, “We have a lot of really smart people working on this, a number of committed players who want to play through this, but everybody wants to play safely. If we’re not smart and safe, then we’ll fail. We’re doing everything we can not to fail.”

Attanasio expressed continued confidence in the practices established by Major League Baseball to combat the virus.

“Our goal is to play baseball this year and to see this all the way through,” he said. “I think everyone should realize decisions are made with that context. It's not necessarily a negative thing when a game is canceled. In some sense, because of the way things have evolved, we're in a leadership spot here for other sports. The NBA has the benefit of being in a bubble. They have fewer teams than we do. But I think the NFL is watching us closely because they know ‘they got next.’

“I have a lot of confidence in everyone involved. Frankly, I do believe we're working very well with [MLB Players Association executive director] Tony Clark and the players with this. I think everybody is aligned in their interest and their goal to play."

Brewers union rep Brent Suter echoed Attanasio’s sentiment.

“I’m still hopeful that we can play this season," Suter said. "It is going to take an ever-adapting and incredibly committed league-wide effort to get it done.”