Coronavirus: Seattle Mariners tell players to enter offseason mode
- Seattle had planned to keep their Arizona facility open, but decided to shut down spring training operations due to dwindling numbers.
The Seattle Mariners have told players to enter offseason mode after closing their spring training complex amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The start of the MLB season has been pushed back due to COVID-19 – Opening Day was originally scheduled for March 26 and it had already been postponed before a further delay.
Seattle had planned to keep their Arizona facility open, but the Mariners decided to shut down spring training operations due to dwindling numbers.
"Frankly, we were concerned about group gatherings of any sort, particularly after we got news of a positive test from a baseball staffer from another club," said Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto.
"Right now, as we expressed to them starting last week, our primary concern isn't preparing for baseball season It's making sure we stay as healthy as we can and that we're doing our part in a public health crisis to not spread this thing any further than it already has or will.
"Many of our guys can't access gyms. We've built moderate throwing programs and told guys to go into offseason mode psychologically and emotionally and understand when we get back, you will have time. We're not going to ask guys to go from zero to 60 without time to ramp up."
Coronavirus continues to disrupt sport across the globe as countries try to contain COVID-19.
Globally, more than 10,000 people have died from almost 245,000 cases.
There have been over 205 deaths in the United States, with at least 13,700 cases.Published 20 Mar 2020, 05:12 IST