The healthy Marlins are preparing for the unknown as coronavirus keeps baseball on hold

Jordan McPherson, Miami Herald on

Published in Baseball

MIAMI -- Michael Hill isn't used to this.

It's early April. Baseball is supposed to be in full swing.

Instead, the Miami Marlins' president of baseball operations has to resort to throwback games, old radio calls and watching his kids play simulated games on their PlayStation if he wants to watch America's pastime.

"I've been trying to get my fix any way possible," Hill said Thursday on a conference call.

Major League Baseball postponed its season four weeks ago because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. When it will return and in what format are still unknown. Numerous hypotheticals are being discussed by the MLB and the MLB Players' Association, including a recent report unveiled by ESPN that would quarantine all 30 teams in Phoenix and play games without fans as early as May.

In the grand scheme of things, Hill said, that's secondary at this point. Hill won't speculate on the what ifs and doesn't intend to think about a timeline for when baseball will resume.


"I'm just hoping and praying it's sooner rather than later," Hill said. "I'm doing my part and we constantly encourage everyone to do their part of the quarantining and the social distancing."

Hill said no one in the organization has tested positive or shown symptoms of COVID-19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. He's in daily constant communication with people throughout the organization. Strength and conditioning coaches and trainers have individualized plans for players to stay in shape during the hiatus.

"It's an adjustment," Hill said. "We talk so much about baseball being a game of adjustments. This is something that we've never seen before. We just try to get through it as best we can. Staying in constant communication with our people just because this is something new for everyone, something that the entire world is dealing with. ... You devoted your lives and careers to this game. This is something new for all of us."

It's a challenge for all in baseball. They're preparing for the unknown, doing what they can to be ready for that unknown day -- whether it's next month, this summer or next year -- that they get the all clear to return to the baseball diamond.


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