Under ordinary circumstances, Monday would be my first of several days in Arizona. In a few hours, I’d be pulling into Glendale’s Camelback Ranch to watch Texas’s youngest minor leaguers take on the White Sox. Instead, I’m home, under circumstances that won't be ordinary for a long time.
Barely over a week ago, I wasn’t especially worried about my own health or being a vector that could harm others. I travel to Arizona alone by car, usually off the beaten path, and I keep a relatively low profile on the back fields. But as last week transpired, I found myself prepared physically but not mentally, increasingly ill at ease. Time set aside for studying players was instead spent studying a virus and contemplating life-altering events. By Tuesday, I was drawing to the disappointing conclusion that for the first time since 2006, I wouldn’t be visiting Arizona. By Thursday, when MLB suspended spring training, I’d already overcome my disappointment. The announcement was a relief.
I already work from home, and my wife will be as of later today, but now we also have a homebound daughter for who knows how long, so our schedule will be… I don’t know. Complicated, I guess. Goodness knows I’m not complaining. So many people (and perhaps some of y’all) have it much worse. On the whole, minor league ballplayers are in that group. They haven’t received a paycheck in months and don’t know when the next will come. The situation is already terrible, and we’re nowhere near the bottom.
Hopefully, we’ll have some baseball later this year. If you’re old enough, you remember the emotional impact of baseball resuming after the September 11 attacks. Opening Day 2020 will be even more momentous, I’d wager.
As for the Newberg Report, I’ve got some ideas on how to fill the time between now and then, but I don’t want to promise anything specific yet.
I hope you’re getting by and able to care for those you love, even though “care for” might mean “avoid” for the time being.