Rob Manfred hates baseball. Or just loves money more.
That seems to be the only explanation for why this baseball season is continuing the way it is.
Not even a month into this abomination of “a season”, games are already undergoing postponements and cancellations due to COVID outbreaks among teams.
Between July 21 – 31, the Miami Marlins had 20 positive cases, causing them to cancel 2 weeks’ worth of games. This past week, the St. Louis Cardinals’ had an outbreak of their own, with 13 positive cases confirmed between players and staff. More have been confirmed since early Friday morning.
And they most certainly will not be the last.
In an effort to combat the spread of COVID, the MLB announced new safety protocols. The most notable protocol states that players and staff must now wear face coverings at all times while in the ballpark. A rule that surprisingly was not already in place.
The MLB and the Player’s Association knew COVID was bound to spread throughout the league, despite their new protocols. Preventative measures only help so much. Now a season that is already a massive dumpster fire just gets smellier and smellier.
In order to fill in the lost games, the MLB has designated that teams must play 7-inning doubleheaders, effectively throwing the rulebook out the window.
Fans and players continue to voice their distrust in the league’s management. One very enthusiastic fan sings what effectively sums up Rob Manfred’s tenure as commissioner and his less than stellar handling of the COVID season:
Cincinnati Reds pitcher Trevor Bauer has also been outspoken during this pandemic. Bauer routinely calls out Manfred’s poor leadership decisions through his Youtube channel, Momentum. Be sure to check out Trevor’s “Inside the COVID Season” Vlog on his channel.
Unsurprisingly, COVID prevention is not the only area where Manfred exposes his ineptitude.
Joe Kelly’s suspension was another massive blow to the leagues reputation. For those who don’t know, Dodgers reliever Joe Kelly was suspended for a whopping 8 games after the league alleged that he was intentionally trying to hit Astro’s players, Alex Bregman and Carlos Correa, mocking them during a game between the two clubs on July 28th, leading to a bench clearing altercation. For context, the Astros, who have been widely accused of cheating between 2017 to 2019, beat the Dodgers in the 2017 World Series.
So, it’s safe to say there is some bad blood there.
Check out Jomboy’s commentary of the incident below.
With a season that has been reduced to only 60 games, an 8-game suspension for Joe Kelly is equal to a 22-game suspension in a regular 162-game season. That’s roughly 13% of the season. While the incident shows that Joe Kelly was likely attempting to hit the Astros’ batters, he is known as a pitcher who has trouble with command. During the offseason, a viral video showed Joe Kelly losing control of a practice pitch in his backyard and shattering his bedroom window.
In the week since his suspension, Kelly has gained massive support from fans and players all over the country. T-shirts of his likeness are exploding in sales, and #FreeJoeKelly is currently trending on Twitter and Instagram.
Kelly’s support largely stems from the MLB’s refusal to punish any of the players involved in the Astro’s sign-stealing scandal. Astros players Alex Bregman, Carlos Correa, George Springer, and Jose Altuve are some of the prime targets for the much deserved vitriol. Manfred even doubled down on his leniency of the Astros, stating that any attempts to retaliate against Astros players would not be tolerated.
But the biggest question that many fans are asking is: why didn’t the MLB create a bubble?
The NBA and NHL have been largely successful in preventing the spread among players and staff by playing all scheduled games within a tightly regulated bubble. When the season was initially postponed, a plan to host all regular season games in Arizona was in the works. That seems to have fallen through rather quickly.
Rob Manfred and the team owners continue to put the health and safety of their players in jeopardy, eviscerating the rules of the sport in order to support their wallets. Manfred has effectively jeopardized the MLB’s future by showing the next generation of players that cheating is tolerated and that bureaucracy trumps health and safety.
Let us know if you think the MLB COVID season should continue in the poll below.
Should The MLB Season Continue In It’s Current Form?
Yes, Let It Continue
No, Cancel It
No, Suspend It and Draft New Protocols
Is Rob Manfred Unfit To Lead The MLB?
No – it’s fine. Everything’s fine.