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Report: MLB players balking at restrictive health measures to contain COVID-19

MLB, season

Major League Baseball is attempting to overcome multiple major hurdles to start a season that was suspended back in March due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

It’s been a major struggle for the league. The latest example includes a report suggesting that MLB’s proposal to start the season in July has not been approved by local health officials around the United States.

Now comes this report from ESPN’s Jesse Rogers indicating that some players are balking at the restrictive health measures in the latest proposal to help prevent the spread of the virus.

“Some major league baseball players are hoping for tweaks to the health proposal recently offered up by the league as the sport continues its discussions for a restart,” the insider noted. “Mostly, players want to know whether some in-stadium and clubhouse restrictions can be loosened based on frequent testing for the coronavirus.”

St. Louis Cardinals infielder Paul DeJong is supportive of daily virus testing. Though, he’d “like to see the freedom operating in the clubhouse and on the field.”

This could potentially be another major sticking point. Major League Baseball continues to note that it’s following the guidelines set forth by health experts and will follow the science of it all. Daily testing will play a big role.

However, social distancing remains key to preventing the spread of the virus. There’s always false negatives and false positives when it comes to testing for a pandemic like this.

MLB’s protocols call for major changes to what seemed to be common practice. Showering at the stadium as well as the use of hydrotherapy pools and cryotherapy chambers are among the things that will be banned.

“Not getting to use any of the facilities that help recover our bodies is going to be a problem,” Miami Marlins pitcher Brandon Kintzler said.

Another unnamed player openly asked why teams would have to use separate balls if everyone tested negative for the virus? The argument here is that the virus can’t spread where it doesn’t even exist in the first place.

As with the overall societal response to the pandemic, everything seems to be a work in progress right now. This is magnified when it comes to a sports world that saw everything stop on a dime when the NBA season was suspended back on March 11.

Major League Baseball and its players will have to overcome these hurdles if they hope to start the season some time in early July. That’s for sure.

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