Major League Baseball and the rest of the sports world came to a halt last month due to concerns over the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
For MLB, that meant cancelling all remaining Spring Training games and indefinitely postponing the start of the regular season.
Opening Day, originally scheduled for March 26, has since been pushed back twice. While the league has been evaluating its options to resume play, there still isn’t a concrete plan in place that would see the return of baseball anytime soon.
As a result, MLB players find themselves in unfamiliar territory. After gearing up for the 2020 season in Spring Training, they are now left with uncertainty as to when they’ll be able to next take the field again.
Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw noted that the shutdown has opened his eyes as to how much he loves and misses playing baseball, via Arash Markazi of the L.A. Times:
“It’s been weird,” Kershaw said. “It’s been hard not to have baseball. I miss not going to the field every day. I miss Dodger Stadium. I didn’t realize how much I would miss it, I think. This puts it all into perspective, and we’re not ready to quit anytime soon. We still love it. I miss it a lot.
“I don’t think I’ve ever had a month away from baseball, especially a month when you’re supposed to have it. I’ve been hurt before obviously, but at least you’re still around the guys and in the clubhouse and you know you’re going to play at some point. It’s been good for me in terms of having a perspective of how much I do love it and miss it when I don’t have it.”
Kershaw’s comments reflect those of other players in the same situation. Walker Buehler recently detailed that he misses interacting with Dodgers teammates in the clubhouse.
The hiatus has also affected Justin Turner, who now appreciates the “little things” that come with the daily grind of the sport.
David Price, acquired by the Dodgers a month before the league suspended operations, additionally misses the process of forming bonds with new teammates.
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