A growing number of MLB players continue to voice their concerns about the upcoming 60-game 2020 season. Respected veterans like Washington Nationals infielder Ryan Zimmerman and Colorado Rockies outfielder Ian Desmond already have opted out of this abbreviated season, and former A's pitcher Tyson Ross also has chosen to withdraw from the season after being released by the Giants last week.
While he isn't going so far as to officially opt out, Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout expressed his reservations about playing the 2020 season amid the coronavirus pandemic.
"Honestly, I still don't feel comfortable," Trout told reporters Friday (h/t ESPN). "Obviously, with the baby coming, there's a lot of stuff going through my mind right now, my wife's mind and my family. Just trying to [find] the safest and most cautious way to get through a season."
The outfielder and his wife, Jessica Cox, are expecting their first child next month.
The A's and the rest of MLB began returning to training camps this week in home ballparks, the first time teams have been together in-person since the remainder of Spring Training was canceled back on Mar. 12. Trout was adamant about the need for safety during this unprecedented training camp.
"I think the biggest thing is, obviously, I don't want to test positive, and I don't want to bring it back to my wife," he said. "We've thought hard about all this; still thinking about all this. It's a tough time, tough situation we're in, everybody's in. Everybody's got a responsibility in this clubhouse to social distance, stay inside, wear masks and keep everybody safe."
MLB issued players a 113-page protocol for maintaining health and safety with coronavirus cases rising around the country, covering everything from interacting with teammates in the clubhouse to the proper procedure for storing practice baseballs. Nevertheless, players likely will continue to publicly voice their apprehensions.
Trout's voice is powerful within the sport, as the three-time AL MVP arguably is the game's best active player. If more stars keep making their worries public, their influence could carry a lot of weight among teammates and other members of organizations around the league.