Players across Major League Baseball are reporting this week for what the league is calling "Summer Camp." It's July. Baseball is coming... probably. Amid the excitement about MLB's return, however, some players are expressing concern about the growing number of coronavirus cases across the country.
A handful of players have already opted out of playing this season due to the pandemic. Twins reliever Trevor May is preparing to play, at least at present, but recently voiced his concerns about baseball's pandemic comeback.
Here's some of whay May told Dan Hayes of The Athletic:
"We're all just waiting for bad news. It's kind of the way this year has gone. … It's hard to focus on getting your arm ready to go pitch in a Major League Baseball game."
"Maybe I'm not scared enough for my own safety. But I'm dreading that day I wake up and see on Twitter that someone in a front office somewhere not only tested positive but is really in dire straits.
"We're not medical professionals that need to be there for other people. I understand the whole (thinking) — 'It's fun to watch and would be a nice distraction.' I get that. People need to be distracted sometimes. But sometimes it feels a little bit like we have a responsibility to send the other message that maybe we really need to figure this out as a group and not try to force things we want to do right now. It's kind of what we're doing."
Though May is among the first since camp opened to speak in such a manner, he's likely not alone. As the season progresses, the best guess here is that we'll see more players opting out, even after they've reported or even appeared in a few games.
As things stand, most teams are gearing up to play three exhibition games against neighbors (think Giants vs. A's, Cubs vs. White Sox, Yankees vs. Mets, etc.) and then Opening Day for a 60-game season will be July 23 and 24.