NEW YORK (AP) — The NBA has announced the postponement of its upcoming draft lottery and draft combine amid concerns over the coronavirus pandemic. Both events were scheduled to take place in Chicago this month. The NBA said it will provide more information on each event at a later date as the league continues to monitor the pandemic and consult with infectious disease specialists, public health experts and government officials.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Washington Nationals manager Dave Martinez is certain that his team will wait to properly mark its World Series championship with spectators in the seats. Martinez said in a conference call today that the Nats want to hang their banner and receive their championship rings with fans on hand, adding that it’s a big deal for everybody. Contingency plans for opening the major league season include playing in empty ballparks, perhaps at neutral sites.
UNDATED (AP) — Two people familiar with the agreement tell The Associated Press that Major League Baseball and its umpires have reached a deal to cover a 2020 pay structure during the coronavirus pandemic. The agreement includes a 50% cut in May and nothing more this year if no games are played. As part of the deal, MLB has the right not to use instant replays of umpires' decisions during the 2020 season. MLB is considering playing at spring training facilities that aren’t wired for replay.
CLEVELAND (AP) — Cleveland Indians reliever Emmanuel Clase has been suspended 80 games by Major League Baseball for testing positive for a banned performance-enhancing drug. Clase was acquired from the Texas Rangers this winter in Cleveland's trade of two-time Cy Young winner Corey Kluber. The hard-throwing right-hander was expected to have a major role at the back end of the Indians' bullpen this season.
UNDATED (AP) — Major League Soccer is allowing players to return to outdoor team training fields for voluntary individual workouts starting Wednesday. MLS says the individual workouts must follow certain health and safety protocols as well as local public health and government policies. MLS suspended the season because of the coronavirus pandemic on March 12, closing all team facilities but asking players to remain in market with their teams. The league-wide moratorium on group and team training remains in effect through May 15.