New York Yankees players and coaches will remain in Tampa to work out despite MLB encouraging everyone to return home.
Amid the coronavirus outbreak — which has forced MLB to cancel the rest of spring training and delay Opening Day by two weeks — the league is giving players three options. Either return home (which the league is encouraging the most unless you’re international), return to your team’s respective city, or remain in your spring training location.
After a vote, the New York Yankees players have decided on the latter-most choice.
Yankee players vote unanimously to remain in Tampa and work out according to Zack Britton.
— George A. King III (@GeorgeAKingIII) March 13, 2020
Coaches are additionally staying in Tampa amid the outbreak and schedule changes.
Yankees coaching staff will stay in Tampa, per Brian Cashman. A few of them live here in the offseason.
— Lindsey Adler (@lindseyadler) March 13, 2020
The Yankees’ final game prior to the drastic schedule alterations came on Thursday against the Washington Nationals. New York ousted the defending World Series champions by a score of 6-3. MLB implemented the changes shortly after the matchup.
The Bombers had just 12 exhibition games remaining on their schedule prior to the beginning of the regular-season slate. Opening Day was initially scheduled to occur on March 26.
Two weeks after the original date would be Thursday, April 9. Don’t expect that to be the start date though. ESPN’s Jeff Passan provided his insight on this very discussion Friday morning, saying that the games likely won’t start until May at the earliest.
Joined @GetUpESPN this morning to talk about how the distinct expectation among those in baseball — owners, players, executives, nearly everyone — is that the earliest we’re likely to see games again is May. pic.twitter.com/S4bUktlFt5
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 13, 2020
“From everybody that I speak to — players, executives, officials, people at the [players] union — the answer is no,” Passan said when asked if an April 9 start date was “realistic.” “If there is baseball on April 9, something went really, really well across the country. But the expectation at this point, among almost everybody, is that we’re not going to see baseball until May.”
Will we ever witness the 2020 MLB regular season? It’s too early to tell, but the Yankees are preparing for it nonetheless.