Earlier this month, MLB, along with many other professional sports leagues, announced that it would be delaying the start of its season amid concerns over the spread of the respiratory virus.
On 26 March, what would have been the first day of MLB games, the baseball league’s commissioner Rob Manfred took the opportunity to reflect on the changes the sport faces and the hopes for the future.
“Opening day holds an important place in our hearts. It signifies the arrival of spring, the promise of new beginnings, the return of following your favourite team on a long journey filled with twists and turns, and the hope that your team will put together a magical season you will remember forever,” Manfred wrote in a statement shared to social media.
“Today is unlike any opening day in Major League Baseball’s long history. We need to call on the optimism that is synonymous with Opening Day and the unflinching determination required to navigate an entire baseball season to help us through the challenging situation currently facing us all.”
— MLB (@MLB)March 26, 2020
"We're not going to announce an alternate opening day at this point. We're going to have to see how things develop,” Manfred said at the time.