Thursday, February 27, 2020
Is the 2020 Season Going to be Cancelled?
So if you've been following the news at all recently you may have heard that the Coronavirus has arrived in Japan. We don't have it as bad as China or South Korea yet but we are up there with Italy, Iran and Singapore in that list of countries where this is bad and likely to get a lot worse. We've had 175 domestic cases so far, including in my prefecture, in addition to about 800 on the Diamond Princess cruise ship.
The Prime Minister, apparently on a whim, announced last night that all schools across the country will close from Monday. So we had to break that to our son this morning. Normally he loves missing school, but this means that the school year (which ends in March) is suddenly and unexpectedly over and he has to say goodbye to his teacher and friends today, so it was kind of a bummer.
Another question this epidemic has raised is whether or not organized sporting events will continue and it seems like the 2020 baseball season, or at least part of it, is at risk. The NPB commissioner announced that all remaining pre-season games will be played before empty stadiums and he declined to confirm whether opening day, which happens in just 3 weeks, will go ahead as scheduled.
I am no medical expert but I don't really see any way, given how things have unfolded in China, that this is going to be resolved by the March 20 opener. The Prime Minister just closed all the schools in the country until after that date so likely we are at best looking at a shortened season ahead.
At worst? I don't know. Hopefully this thing doesn't get too bad and gets under control before they have to cancel the whole season but it could come to that. There is already a lot of talk about the possibility of cancelling the Olympics in July and if that happens I can't imagine the baseball season going ahead as planned.
Well, not that my concern over the baseball season is that big given that I don't want me or my family to get a deadly disease. But since this blog is about baseball, that is what I'm focusing on.
I'm a bit hopeful that the worst won't play out. They say these Coronaviruses don't do well in warm weather so hopefully when spring arrives it'll die down. But there is so much unknown that its really impossible to say at this point and I'm just keeping my fingers crossed (mostly that my family doesn't get this, but also that the baseball season goes ahead).
Posted by Sean at 5:16 PM