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Report: MLB to Close All Spring Training Facilities for Sanitizing


The same day that the Philadelphia Phillies closed their training facility in Clearwater, Fla., following the positive coronavirus test results of five players and three staff members, Major League Baseball is now reportedly closing all spring training sites in Arizona and Florida.

The news was first reported by Bob Nightengale of USA Today, and later confirmed by The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal.

It reportedly wasn't just the Phillies who had infected players, either. Prior to the league's decision, the Toronto Blue Jays also closed down their team facilities in Dunedin, Fla., after a player showed symptoms of COVID-19, according to ESPN's Jeff Passan. A total of 11 players from 40-man rosters of seven teams have tested positive for COVID-19 in June, according to Jared Diamond and Ben Cohen of the Wall Street Journal.

Once the deep cleaning process is completed, players and staff members re-entering the facilities will undergo testing, and won't be permitted inside until they receive a negative test result.

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Earlier on Friday, the league told the MLB players' union that it would not submit a counter offer to the players' 70-game season proposal. That offer came after MLB commissioner Rob Manfred and MLBPA executive director Tony Clark met face-to-face in Arizona on Tuesday, at Manfred's request. The league is now discussing options with the owners and could try to implement a season in the 50-game range. Its last offer to the players included a 60-game season.

The MLBPA issued the following statement Friday evening:

"MLB has informed the Association that is will not respond to our last proposal and will not play more than 60 games. Our Executive Board will convene in the near future to determine next steps. Importantly, Players remain committed to getting back to work as soon as possible."