MLB Announces Minimum Two-Week Delay to Start of 2020 Season

Major League Baseball is delaying the start of the regular season.
Major League Baseball is delaying the start of the regular season. / Brace Hemmelgarn/Getty Images

Major League Baseball has finally made it official by suspending Spring Training due to the effects of the coronavirus epidemic, as well as pushing back the start of the regular season.

The news came out Thursday afternoon, as Spring Training games were taking place -- everything following 4:00 was swiftly canceled, with plenty more postponements still on the docket.

Pushing it back by a minimum of two weeks means the league could always make the delay even longer. Teams will need time to get back into playing shape, and there is no update yet as to whether they will remain at their Spring Training facilities or go home (players have been encouraged to stay, but are free to leave).

This is monumental news, yet it was also bound to happen, given the moves made by other leagues. MLB could not put the players at risk of potentially catching or spreading coronavirus.

Delaying the season is a bummer for baseball fans. However, it is a short delay, and is better than some teams opening the season without being allowed to play at home. Even playing at neutral sites would have potentially exposed players to the virus.

MLB is often behind the curve. This was finally a proactive move from the league that is in touch with society. It is as-yet unknown whether the two weeks of games will simply be canceled, or rather moved to a later date.