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MLB releases statement on coronavirus

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MLB has made a decision on player/media availability due to the virus.

MLB: Spring Training-Los Angeles Dodgers at San Diego Padres Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

On Monday, the MLB held a conference call with all 30 team owners to discuss their options moving forward involving the coronavirus. The league decided they would not postpone the beginning of the regular season, unlike the Nippon Professional Baseball league that has agreed to move the start of their season from March 20th to sometime in “mid-April.”

As of now, it looks like the only changes the MLB will be implementing are adjustments to media access. Team clubhouses are no longer open but players will be made available in press conferences and other workable settings.

Here’s the MLB’s official statement:

“We are continuing to monitor developments and will adjust as necessary. While MLB recognizes the fluidity of this rapidly evolving situation, our current intention is to play Spring Training and regular season games as scheduled.

”On a temporary basis, effective on Tuesday, only players and essential personnel may enter locker rooms and clubhouses at MLB facilities. In a joint step with other professional sports leagues, we are requiring that Clubs relocate media availabilities to another area in their facilities. Clubs will be expected to provide best efforts in facilitating usual media coverage and access to uniformed personnel and team officials in these alternate settings. Access for and coverage by the BBWAA and all media are vital to our game and we hope to resume normal operations as quickly as possible. We appreciate the media’s cooperation with this temporary step, which is being taken out of an abundance of caution for the best interests of all.”

The MLB said they will continue to monitor the situation and make decisions accordingly. There’s also the chance that games could be played with only “essential personnel” are permitted in the stadium.