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Positive Tests Cast Doubt on Abbreviated MLB Season

Andy Berg

While the MLB’s highly anticipated 2020 season kicked off this weekend there was no shortage of ominous signs as players took to empty stadiums amid a pandemic.

Just four days into the shortened season, it is now being reported that eight Miami Marlins players and two coaches have been removed from the team’s active roster after testing positive for COVID-19. The team has now canceled its home opener against Baltimore that was scheduled for today, while the New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies also canceled their game Monday, according to The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal. The Phillies played the Marlins over the weekend. Meanwhile, the Cincinnati Reds announced a positive test over the weekend, and slugger Mike Moustakas stayed away from the ballpark on Sunday after he felt ill that morning.

The Marlins placed catcher Jorge Alfaro on the injured list, with no reason given, according to USA Today. Sunday, the team scratched starting pitcher Jose Urena 90 minutes before he was scheduled to start their series finale at Philadelphia. The club did not give a reason for Urena’s removal, but MLB Network reported that Urena tested positive for COVID-19.

There's a possibility that the Marlins may now be stuck in Philadelphia over the positive tests, as the team may have to quarantine before getting on a plane.

“The guys that tested positive are quarantined here in Philly,” manager Don Mattingly told SFGATE.

The Marlins  postponed their flight back to Miami, a decision that was made after consulting players and their families.

“We were more comfortable flying as a group later,” Mattingly said. "We’re talking about these guys traveling back home to their families and their kids, and it’s the reason we want to be safe.

“It’s fair to say guys are concerned about things. They want how they’re feeling about the situation to be heard. I think it's fair. We're talking about health.”

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