Kris Bryant: Coronavirus pandemic ‘bigger than baseball’
With Opening Day just two weeks away, Major League Baseball continues to weigh its options on how to most appropriately establish protocols for handing the coronavirus pandemic.
It remains to be seen whether MLB elects to suspend the start of the regular season, move games out of cities most deeply affected by COVID-19 outbreaks or some other option.
Amid all the uncertainty regarding the wisest course of action, Chicago Cubs slugger Kris Bryant put the game of baseball in its proper perspective in light of the ongoing and understandable concerns over the coronavirus pandemic.
“We just we all need to take precautions and be safe,” Bryant said this week, via Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune. “I have a lot of family members who are older, too, and I’d love to keep them safe and our fans and everyone around the game. It just shows there are things bigger than baseball, and these are things we need to take very seriously.”
Addressing the distinct possibility that regular-season games conceivably could be played in empty ballparks to accomplish that priority, Bryant said everything ought to be considered.
“I keep saying it’s people’s safety and health that is the most important thing,” Bryant said. “If we can find a way to not put people in jeopardy, that’s what I’m all for. People’s lives mean more to me than baseball.”
The overarching concerns regarding the health and safety of the league’s players, team and ballpark staffs, not to mention fans, are obviously paramount when it comes to how the MLB determines how to best handle the ongoing public health crisis.
All options seemingly remain on the table for MLB at this point, but with teams like the Oakland Athletics and Seattle Mariners already complying with governmental directives concerning limiting the further transmission of the novel coronavirus, odds are the league’s hand will be forced sooner rather than later.