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Elephant Rumblings: MLB should avoid October, says Dr. Anthony Fauci

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MLB news roundup

The White House Holds Daily Briefing On Coronavirus Pandemic Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Good morning, Athletics Nation!

Just when you thought the labor dispute between MLB and its players might completely ruin the chance for a 2020 season, the original problem that caused this whole mess has popped back into the picture: the coronavirus pandemic.

“If the question is time, I would try to keep it in the core summer months and end it not with the way we play the World Series, until the end of October when it’s cold. I would avoid that,” said infections disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci, in a story by Bill Shaikin of the Los Angeles Times.

That’s not a proclamation that baseball definitely won’t work in October, but rather a guideline based on what little is known about a disease that has proven somewhat unpredictable so far. Fauci has long warned of a second wave of the virus as the weather cools down and people spend more time indoors, hence his advice to avoid playing too late into the year.

Meanwhile, cases have already begun to increase again in some states, even as temperatures are still rising at the outset of summer. Recent reports also revealed that several MLB and NFL players have tested positive for the virus.

To this point, the league and players have mostly been arguing about money, with both sides generally agreeing that it’s possible to safely play some games with proper health protocols in place. We’ll see if that continues to be the case, and/or if MLB gets spooked by the possibility of the cash-cow postseason being canceled. One way or other, any re-heightened concerns about the ongoing pandemic could serve as yet another complicating factor in this whole debacle.

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