Each team of the Major League Baseball will close its spring training camp because of concerns about the pandemic of sars coronavirus, a decision that is made as a result of the Philadelphia Phillies, announcing Friday that five players had been tested positive for COVID-19.
The closures occur at a time when the owners and players of the MLB are trying to negotiate an agreement to start the season, and raise the possibility that the virus outbreak could hinder all attempts of start-up this year.
A person familiar with the decision told the Associated Press that the complex of spring in Florida and Arizona will close temporarily due to recent events. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because there was no official statement.
PLAYERS OF THE PHILLIES AND MEMBERS OF THE STAFF TEST POSITIVE FOR THE CORONAVIRUS AT A TRAINING CENTRE SPRING
The facilities will undergo a cleaning and disinfection in depth. Nobody will be allowed to return without a negative test for the virus.
Shortly after that the Phillies become the first team known to be affected by the epidemic, Toronto has closed its site in Dunedin, Florida, approximately eight kilometres from the camp of Philadelphia at Clearwater. The Blue Jays have said that a player showed symptoms consistent with the virus.
The facilities of the San Francisco Giants in Scottsdale, ariz., have been closed after one person who had visited the site and a member of the family has exhibited symptoms on Thursday. Texas has closed its camp about 30 miles away in Surprise, saying that nobody had tested positive but that he wanted to extend the test protocols.
In addition, the Houston Astros have stated that a player working in their camp in the spring in West Palm Beach, Florida, had tested positive a few days ago and was recovering. The Astros have stated that they have ” implemented all the protocols of health and safety “, but were not told that the camp was closed.
Stuck in a fierce struggle for the money, the owners and the union had hoped that the players would begin the tests on Tuesday, and then start a second session of the spring training session next weekend. Most of the teams had planned to organize these exercises in their playground, in their homes, rather than in their camps and spring in Florida and Arizona.
Earlier this week, the sub-commissioner Dan Halem wrote in a letter to the chief negotiator for the players union, Bruce Meyer, that “the proliferation of epidemics of COVID-19 across the country during the last week, and the fact that we already knew several teams of 40 men’s players and staff who have been tested positive, has increased the risks associated with start spring training in the coming weeks. ”
About the implications of the epidemic on the season, the Phillies have stated that “it is too early to tell”.
The Phillies have stated that three members of the staff of the camp had also tested positive. The team has not identified any of the persons concerned.
Florida has experienced an increase in the number of new cases and rate of cases positive for COVID-19. Over the past two weeks, the average number dragging new cases daily in Florida has increased by 1 422,7, or 144,4%.
Arizona has also seen a recent spike in cases, reaching a record of new cases daily.
The Phillies have stated that the first confirmed case occurred on Tuesday. The club said that eight staff members have been tested negative for the virus, while 12 members of staff and 20 players – in the major leagues and minor leagues – living in the Clearwater area are being tested.
The Phillies have closed their facilities in march when the pandemic coronavirus has put an end to sports. Players returning from injury have been allowed to continue their rehabilitation after thorough cleaning of the installation. Some of the coaches and staff of the team stayed to supervise and security measures have been taken.
Several other players have started to train in the facility over the past few weeks, but the size of the groups was limited.
In a statement, his associate director, John Middleton, said: “The Phillies are determined to make the health and well-being of our players, coaches and members of our staff our absolute priority.”
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“The result of these tests are confirmed, all the facilities of Clearwater have been closed indefinitely to all the players, coaches and staff and will remain closed until the medical authorities are convinced that the virus is under control and that our facilities are disinfected,” he said.
The champion the world championships the Washington Nationals, which has not reopened the camp in the spring that he shares with Houston after closing its portion in mid-march, said that there would have been a test of the player’s minor league positive in the dominican Republic. The team said that the player was not at home.
The writer AP Baseball Ronald Blum, the writers AP Hockey John Wawrow and Stephen Whyno and the writer, AP Sports Rob Maaddi contributed to this report.