UPDATE (3:10 p.m. ET): Major League Baseball has announced Opening Day will be delayed by at least two weeks, and that spring training games have been cancelled.
Statement from Major League Baseball: pic.twitter.com/0bWS5VTRPu
— MLB (@MLB) March 12, 2020
ORIGINAL STORY: Major League Baseball is the latest sports entity to halt business amid the worldwide coronavirus pandemic.
Baseball is suspending operations indefinitely, according to multiple reports Thursday. The decision comes as sports leagues across the world have begun to quickly close their doors amid fears of the coronavirus spreading even more.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan was the first to report the news, indicating the league is expected to suspend spring training, and it’s likely the suspension of play will extend into the regular season.
After a conference call among owners this afternoon, Major League Baseball is expected to suspend spring training. The league likely will delay the beginning of the regular season as well. At this point, it's a formality that ownership-level sources expect to happen.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 12, 2020
For reference, Major League Baseball’s regular season begins Thursday, March 26.
MLB essentially is following the lead of the NBA, which suspended its own season indefinitely Wednesday night after two players from the Utah Jazz tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. The NHL announced it is suspending its season, while most college basketball and hockey conferences have canceled their postseason tournaments.
According to the New York Post, the NBA’s decision to suspend its season made the choice clear and obvious for MLB.
Thumbnail photo via Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports Images