Philadelphia Phillies and MLB 2020 season days lost to the COVID-19 pandemic: 10.
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The Lunch Bell pieces have been leading off with COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic news from the area and around the nation for the last week. After this article we will be dropping those items, but will continue to provide any updates relevant to the Phillies and baseball in general as those occur.
Philadelphia area coronavirus updates are provided via The Inquirer live news ticker on the pandemic. Also, the City of Philadelphia is currently under a Business Activity and Stay at Home Order. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and the NIH (National Institutes of Health have tremendous resources on updates and the national response.
President Donald Trump participated in a conference call on Saturday afternoon at noon with the leaders of all American professional sports organizations, including MLB commissioner Rob Manfred. As any details from that meeting emerge we will update fans at our @philliesbell social media feeds.
It appears that some activity is going to begin ramping up across Major League Baseball based on this report from MLB.com Toronto reporter Alexis Brudnicki:
Ken Rosenthal at The Athletic reported on Major League Baseball’s tentative plans to open the 2020 season by playing in empty ballparks, at least at the start:
“The season, at least initially, could be played in Florida or more likely Arizona, where spring training parks are more concentrated. But the logistics of quarantining 30 teams in one area would be extremely complex and potentially controversial…”
Per Joel Sherman at the New York Post, the Major League Baseball players union has approved a plan to aid non-roster players, those who were in spring camps but not on big-league contracts:
“The eight-person union executive subcommittee, which includes current Yankee James Paxton, former Yankee Andrew Miller and former Met Daniel Murphy, agreed Friday to offer the assistance to the 371 players who fell into the category of still in a major league camp March 13 and having had MLB service time, even if it was as little as one day…”
Now for the latest Philadelphia Phillies news from local and national resources:
Fans who are needing a fix of Phillies baseball can get it from NBC Sports Philadelphia on both Saturday and Sunday afternoon:
Meghan Montemurro at The Athletic wrote on the various ripple effects that the MLB season delay is going to have on the Phillies:
“The on-field ripple effects would be wide-ranging. The Phillies are officially in win-now mode after enduring a rebuild and back-to-back September letdowns. There are no guarantees how long their window stays open. They face the possibility of losing a full season from core players such as Bryce Harper (27 years old), Aaron Nola (26), Rhys Hoskins (27) and Zack Wheeler (29) in their respective primes. Didi Gregorius’ one-year deal was an opportunity for the shortstop to re-establish his value, and signing him was part of the reason the Phillies didn’t exceed the luxury tax threshold.”
If you’re a listener of SportsRadio WIP in Philadelphia and follow the team on social media you should already be well aware of Cindy Webster, one of the biggest Phillies fans on the planet. Via her Twitter feed on Saturday morning, Cindy related that she has been let go after 28 years:
Bob Brookover at The Inquirer reported on a conference call with Phillies general manager Matt Klentak during which the GM provided input on a wide variety of issues regarding the team and the baseball stoppage:
“What I am confident in is that the owners, the players, the front offices, the fans, the media, everyone is aligned in wanting to play baseball as quickly as we can. When all the parties are aligned as they are, that gives me confidence that we’ll get back as soon as we possibly can get back. But I’m not in position to make any predictions about when that might happen.”
On Monday afternoon, I appeared as a guest on the “Phillies Talk” podcast hosted by Rich Baxter in which we talked about the numerous effects that the coronavirus pandemic has had on baseball and society. It was a wide-ranging discussion that I think you would enjoy.
You can view the archives for these Lunch Bell reports at any time. They are released every day all year-round barring some unusual circumstance. Each report highlights important updates on the Phillies and MLB, including articles curated from around the web, social media posts, and video. During the pandemic we will include any relevant updates in that regard as well.
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And finally, happy 45th birthday, Scott Rolen!