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Manfred remains 'hopeful' there will be a baseball season

Right now there is no agreement in place between owners and players that would allow the season to get started.
Credit: AP
MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred answers questions at a press conference during MLB baseball owners meetings, Thursday, Feb. 6, 2020, in Orlando, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Speaking Thursday night on CNN, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said he's "hopeful" there will be some kind of season this year. Major League Baseball was shut down by the coronavirus pandemic in March, in the middle of spring training.  

Right now there is no agreement in place between owners and players that would allow the season to get started. Owners have submitted a proposal that has games being played in empty stadiums in the first half of July.

Part of the plan calls for weekly coronavirus testing k with some supplemental antibody testing. Along with that there would be daily temperature checks and sympton analysis.

If a player tests positive he would be removed from the team. The commissioner said medical experts are telling MLB that a 14 day quarantine is unnecessary.

There will be a quarantine management for the player and there will be contact tracing for those who the player was in contact with. There would also be point of care testing to help cut down on the possibility of the virus spreading. 

Manfred told CNN "Nothing is risk-free in this undertaking," Manfred said. "We're trying to mitigate that risk with the repeated point-of-care testing to make sure that people who have had contact have not been exposed, and by obviously removing those individuals that have a positive test, they will be quarantined until they have two negative tests over a 24-hour period."

He added that If any players aren't comfortable with playing, Manfred says, MLB would not force them to come back, and they can wait until they're ready. 

Friday morning the players said they wanted to see the owners financial records. A person familiar with the request told The Associated Press that lawyers for the baseball players’ union asked MLB to submit a slew of financial documents that detail the industry’s finances.     

Baseball owners on Monday approved a proposal that could lead to the coronavirus-delayed season starting around the Fourth of July with a regular-season schedule of about 82 games. Owners also gave the go-ahead to propose basing players’ salaries on a 50-50 revenue split, which the union says is a salary cap and a framework that players will never accept.     

The type of financial disclosure the union asked for is more common during overall collective bargaining talks.     

Commissioner Rob Manfred is confident of reaching a deal with players. He also told CNN on Thursday that he’s hopeful the season can begin, saying they are making plans to play in empty ballparks.

Manfred said earlier that if there is no season played owners losses would be staggering, he estimates that owners would lose $4 billion.

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