This article is part of our Mound Musings series.
We're only a couple weeks from Opening Day, but rosters and preparations for the new season haven't necessarily come together as planned. Simply put, COVID-19 just isn't cooperating. The challenges come in two forms. First, some key players, for personal and very understandable reasons, have opted not to play this season. Generally the reasons involve health risks for the player or risk to family members. Secondly, and this involves all players (and team staff members), every person must test negative for the virus before participating in baseball activities. If they do test positive, they go into quarantine until they test negative twice, typically at least a couple weeks after testing positive. Obviously, a positive test today likely will mean the player will not be available for the beginning of the season. And, that equates to a roster shuffle.
Yes, we will play ball, unless the virus gets completely out of hand, but like so many other things in 2020, in many ways, it won't be like anything we have seen before. There will be differences in the fantasy game as well. Everything about the pandemic is individual. There have been probably 50ish positive tests since training camps resumed – the number changes daily – with most players being asymptomatic or suffering basic flu-like symptoms. How long it will be before each of these players eventually tests negative is very unpredictable. Some could be back soon, while it could theoretically cost others much of the 2020 season. But, as unfortunate as