By Marc Lawrence — According to CBS Sports, MLB is under a ton of pressure to get its act together quickly so hopefully this all works out and its just an early bump in the road in what’ll turn out to be a successful 2020 season, but there’s certainly reason to be concerned and we’re not even a full week into the campaign yet. As Dave Hyde of the Florida Sun Sentinel put it: If 15 of the 30 people in your office had the virus, would you feel comfortable working there? To minimize disruption to the season, MLB has revised its schedule to isolate the Marlins and Phillies who are on lockdown, due to positive coronavirus tests, until further notice. The Marlins will be shut down until at least Sunday and the Phillies will be out of action until at least Friday. MLB will try to make up all postponed games later in the season via doubleheaders and eliminating off-days. If that’s not possible, the league will allow teams to finish the season with an unequal number of games played.
President Trump announced that he would be unable to throw out the first pitch at Yankees Stadium on August 15 because he did not want to break his “strong focus” on the coronavirus. The problem with that statement is that he was never asked to throw out the first pitch. It was news to the New York Yankees, who claim they never invited him to do so. So why would he make such a statement, you ask? The New York Post’s best guess is that because Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert whose clear-eyed assessments of the coronavirus crisis contradict the president’s wishful thinking, was about to throw out the first pitch at the Washington Nationals home opener against the Yankees. Jealous of Fauci, and irritated that the public health expert is stealing the spotlight, Trump said an hour before the doctor’s first pitch Thursday that he, too, would be taking the rubber before a Yankees game. Trump has done this kind of thing before, and for equally stupid, selfish reasons. The most recent example, perhaps, was his announcement in April that he’d be giving a commencement speech at West Point – surprising the school, and forcing cadets to return to campus in the middle of a pandemic to listen to him ramble. Perhaps it’s a good thing Trump won’t be toeing the slab in the Big Apple anytime soon. After all, his last outing 50 miles north of New York City on the Hudson River didn’t go so well.
Grinding Out The Profits
From the PLAYBOOK ADVANTAGE for August: Thanks to 2020’s regionalized schedules, this will be the first season in MLB history in which teams in the same league, competing for the same postseason spot, won’t have played a single common opponent. So file that tidbit away. With modified schedules forthcoming in other sports, it’s likely to come up elsewhere sometime soon.