Hoyer 'Confident' MLB Can Move Forward With Season

By 670 The Score
(670 The Score) Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer remains "confident" that MLB can safely move forward with its season amid the Miami Marlins' COVID-19 outbreak and growing concerns about the virus throughout the league.

"It was natural that we were going to have real challenges," Hoyer said on the McNeil & Parkins Show on 670 The Score on Friday afternoon. "We're restarting this season at a time when cases are spiking up around the country and so as we started travel, I think it was probably somewhat expected that we were going to run into some issues. I think the challenge that we face is they made these rules and they made these protocols with the best intentions, and I think now we're learning a little bit more and we have to continue to work together and to adjust. Certain protocols have probably worked very well. Certain protocols probably haven't worked as well. 

"That's the key to this -- continuing to make adjustments and not acting like the protocols set forth at the beginning are etched in stone. You have to keep adjusting and keep learning. I think we can do this. I'm very confident we can. But obviously having situations like what happened with the Marlins it makes things really challenging. We have to do everything we can as a group to avoid that."

In recent days, 21 members of the Marlins organization have tested positive for COVID-19, leading to the postponement of their games this week. On Friday morning, news broke that two Cardinals players tested positive, which led to the postponement of their game at the Milwaukee Brewers in the evening.

That led to MLB commissioner Rob Manfred warning the players' union that if the health and safety protocols aren't adhere to more seriously and if the coronavirus isn't managed better, the season could be canceled, ESPN reported.

Hoyer didn't criticize the Marlins when given the chance.

"No," Hoyer said when asked if he's mad at the Marlins. "I don't know what exactly happened there. Their guys want to have a season and get paid and keep their families safe as much as anyone. I'm not mad at them, but it is something we have to learn from as a group. Like I said, we can't have these types of outbreaks.

"When we talked through these things or thought through these things before the season, I think the thought process was about the inevitability of having some positives and then quickly moving those players out of your group and then stopping it there. In this situation, it didn't happen that way. I don't think anyone imagined that we were going to have a situation where 19 players were going to get it. That can't happen again, obviously. We need to learn from it. Maybe at the end of this, we look back and we needed that wakeup call. Because I think everyone wants this to go well. Baseball needs to play. In some ways, the first week or so has been really successful and in other ways -- obviously, the fact that we have 20% of the games postponed tonight -- that's not a success. But I think there have been real successes, and I think baseball being back has been really meaningful."