A Difficult Decision: MLB Players Opt Out of the 2020 Season


COVID-19 is a major obstacle in the sports world. For most people 2020 has been very difficult. For MLB players they had to make a choice. Playing only 60 games or opting out. For some, that choice is easy, for others, not so much. 

The MLB season usually consists of 162 games, but due to the pandemic they are only able to salvage playing 60 games for the rest of the season. Out of 30 MLB teams; only 22 players opted out. 

Buster Posey, catcher from the San Francisco Giants opted out on July 10th, 2020. Born prematurely at 32 weeks of age, Posey and his wife Kristen Posey, adopted identical twins. According to ‘Athlon Sports,’ it says for the safety of the twins he took the season off. After discussing the matter with the doctor he thought it was the safest path to go. Another player that took the season off is Kohl Stewart. He is a right handed pitcher (RHP) for the Baltimore Orioles. Stewart opted out July 31st, 2020. Stewart has type-1 diabetes which means he is most likely to undergo severe symptoms due to this he is high risk for COVID.

 Center field for the Colorado Rockies Ian Desmond, disclosed that he will be opting out. He did not want to risk himself, his pregnant wife at the time and four children. He made an Instagram post a few days ago about his wife giving birth. In the caption he wrote, “Baby number 5 has arrived. Both are healthy and happy.”

As sports fans know players had a choice of opting out. The ‘MLB Daily Dish’ said if players consider to put themselves at risk then they will receive their salaries. But if they don’t and they take their season off then they will not collect their 2020 salaries at any point.

The MLB is taking precautions for the whole pandemic. ‘CBS Boston,’ says “Spitting is prohibited, including sunflower seeds and shells. Smokeless tobacco is also prohibited, while chewing gum will be allowed. Rosters will start with 30 players for the first two weeks of the season, drop to 28 players for the next two weeks, and then stay at 26 players the rest of the season.” They are encouraging wearing batting gloves but don’t want  players to hit in the indoor cages. Steam rooms are banned such as water jugs and cryotherapy chambers. If you are giving a sign you are not allowed to touch any part of your face.

 After using the telephone in the dugout you must disinfect it by wiping it down. Physical contact is not allowed unless it involves a tag. Coaches and managers have to wear masks in the dugout and while they are traveling players must wear their face mask on the plane or bus. On the road players are not allowed to eat at restaurants.

I talked to Coach Adams’ son. I asked him “What is your opinion on the MLB season being shortened?” Myles Adams said, “The MLB team has to do what it has to do and by keeping all the players and everyone safe.”  Adams states, “The first priority is always health and safely. I believe that we should not be doing anything that could get people sick or unhealthy but if we find a way to keep people safe and do sports that would be great.”