MLB is set to officially return this Thursday with a pair of games to kick off the shortened season. The Yankees will take on the Nationals followed by the Dodgers versus Giants. Meanwhile, the Blue Jays don’t even have a stadium to play in as the Canadian government denied their request to play games in Toronto. Let’s dive into some of the news from around the league this week.
Top News This Week
- The Milwaukee Brewers might already be off to a rough start as they could be missing Ryan Braun on Opening Day. Braun had already missed his sixth straight day of intrasquads when manager Crain Counsell conceded that he was concerned that Braun would be ready to go by Friday. The 36-year-old has been said to have been experiencing pains in his back and oblique, two areas that have been of major concern for him in the past.
- Things got very complicated for the Toronto Blue Jays this week when the Candian government decided that the team would not be able to play their regular-season games in Toronto. The club had previously received a federal exemption to play Summer Camp games in Toronto, though the added variable of visiting teams likely changed the minds of the decision-makers responsible for kicking the Blue Jays out of Canada.
- Yankees’ right-handed pitcher Domingo German clarified some comments that he had made earlier this week on his social media after posting a cryptic message. German had said that he was leaving baseball and then reversed course the following day. He clarified that it has been very difficult to watch his teammates play without him, leading to the outburst. German is in the middle of an 81-game unpaid suspension after an investigation under the Joint MLB-MLBPA Domestic Violence Policy.
- MLB and the MLBPA revealed the latest COVID-19 test results produced by the league over the last week. Somewhat surprisingly, the number of positive tests continues to fall off, plummeting below 1 percent on new positive tests during the monitoring phase of testing. That includes over 10,000 samples collected during the monitor phase.
- The Philadelphia Phillies announced today that they have granted right-handed reliever Anthony Swarzak his unconditional release. Swarzak had been on a minor league contract with the team since June, and was unlikely to make the Opening Day roster with Philly. In terms of success, Swarzak isn’t that far removed from his most recent run of dominance. In 2017, he put up tremendous numbers between the White Sox and Brewers.
Just for a laugh, we were reminded of one of the greatest postgame interviews in college baseball history this week.
Still one of the most legendary postgame interview responses of all time 🤣
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 19, 2020
New York Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman tested positive for COVID-19 last week. Chapman is said to NOT be experiencing extreme symptoms, though it is a concern that he was in the Yankees camp just a few days before the announcement.
Breaking: Aroldis Chapman has tested positive for COVID-19, Yankees manager Aaron Boone said.
Chapman has mild symptoms, according to Boone. pic.twitter.com/olqzqwnTAA
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 11, 2020
The Atlanta Braves were said to have been looking at a change to their team name, but have decided not to. The team will, however, look into eliminating the Tomahawk Chop from their fan experience.
The Atlanta Braves said in an email to season-ticket holders that they will not be changing their name but will take a further look at the future of the tomahawk chop. https://t.co/l8Xwv4xL7r
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 12, 2020
And finally, we couldn’t not show you this amazing video put together by the Tampa Bay Rays. If this doesn’t get you hyped for Opening Day, nothing will.
Is that all you got? pic.twitter.com/uSaR4lX2IP
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) July 20, 2020
All of that news and more, this week in MLB! Check back weekly with GMS Sports for the most up-to-date information on your favorite sports.