The L.A. Sparks’ Sydney Wiese said Friday on social media that she has tested positive for COVID-19. Other than experiencing minor symptoms, including the possible tell-tale loss of taste and smell, she said she’s doing well and remains quarantined with her parents at their Phoenix home. The 24-year-old guard returned home to Phoenix from Spain…Sparks’ Sydney Wiese tests positive for the coronavirus — Daily News
Toronto FC fans dreaming of some day seeing Sebastian Giovinco back in a Reds’ uniform may be in for a rude awakening. Read MoreFormer TFC star Giovinco says he wants to return to Italy — Toronto Sun
The WNBA draft will go on. The league has let its teams know that the 2020 draft will be held, as scheduled, on April 17 – but it will be done virtually, in light of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. There will be no players, guests or media in attendance; instead, WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert will…WNBA draft will go on as planned April 17 – virtually — Daily News
[ad_1] Ronald Blum, Ap Baseball Writer Updated 7:24 pm CDT, Wednesday, March 25, 2020 NEW YORK (AP) — Mookie Betts and all the players set to be free agents after the 2020 season would still get that chance if there is no baseball this year, part of a broad deal being negotiated by the commissioner’s officer […]AP source: Betts, Bauer, Stroman go free, even if no games — Hppy NEWS
Ronald Blum, Ap Baseball Writer
7:24 pm CDT, Wednesday, March 25, 2020
NEW YORK (AP) — Mookie Betts and all the players set to be free agents after the 2020 season would still get that chance if there is no baseball this year, part of a broad deal being negotiated by the commissioner’s officer and the players’ association.
If there’s no season because of the new coronavirus, the agreement would credit major leaguers with the same service time this year that they earned in 2019, a person familiar with the talks told The Associated Press on Wednesday. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because talks were ongoing.
Trevor Bauer, Marcus Stroman, George Springer, JT Realmuto also would be eligible for free agency, even if the season is canceled.
Betts, the 2018 AL MVP, was acquired by the Dodgers from Boston last month for outfielder Alex Verdugo and two prospects. In a pair of deals at last July’s trade deadline contemplating they would get a top pitcher for 1 1/3 seasons, Cincinnati obtained Bauer from Cleveland and the Mets received Stroman from Toronto.
Service time affects a player’s status for free agency, salary arbitration and the pension plan. The likely service time agreement was first reported by The Athletic.
Major League Baseball and the union would agree to try to play as many regular season games as possible, the person said. They also would agree to explore one-time changes to the postseason, which would create the possibility of expanded playoffs this year.
They would consider multiple schedule options that would take into account player health and safety, economics and ballpark availability. Possible changes might include increased doubleheaders, extending the regular season into October and even November and using neutral sites with warm weather and roofs if needed for the postseason.
“A World Series week would allow for a great trial to open up an avenue of sponsorship,” said agent Scott Boras, a longtime proponent of a neutral-site World Series. “It would give players the ability to be in one place for seven games and lessen the travel after what is going to be a very difficult schedule to get to the World Series.”
If less than a full regular season takes place, a player would receive only a proportional share of his salary.
Management would have the right to delay the amateur draft from its scheduled June 10 start and to shorten it from its current 40 rounds. Teams also could push back the start of the international amateur signing period, which usually is July 2.
As part of a deal, management would advance money that would be given to players on the lower-end of the salary scale.
Opening day was scheduled for Thursday but has been pushed back to mid-May at the earliest due to the new coronavirus. A full service year usually is 172 days, and the season was set to be 186 days long. No matter how many games are played this season, a player on the active roster or injured list for the entire season would receive a full season of service.
Players need six years of big league service to become free agents, and they did not want their eligibility to be pushed back in the event the entire season is canceled. Service time also determines when players become eligible for salary arbitration, which is about 2 years, 120 days.
Formats for the regular season and postseason will be decided later, when it becomes more clear when the season can start. Management already has made proposals for changing the postseason format in 2022, including one plan that would expand the playoffs from 10 teams to 14.
“It is an opportunity probably to be creative or to try some things that people think could stick a little bit or could be kind of a segue to something different down the line,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said. “But it’s certainly probably an opportunity to try some things that you wouldn’t otherwise try in a normal 162-game setting where everything’s kind of going off according to plan.”
You can hear the strain in Jim Lawson’s voice as the Woodbine Entertainment CEO struggles to come to grips with what is happening to his industry as the COVID-19 pandemic creates havoc across the world. Read MoreWoodbine CEO desperately worried about the future of the industry — Toronto Sun
You can hear the strain in Jim Lawson’s voice as the Woodbine Entertainment CEO struggles to come to grips with what is happening to his industry as the COVID-19 pandemic creates havoc across the world.
Mohawk Raceway has recently been shut down, putting hundreds of standardbred track workers out of work. And now the thoroughbred season at Woodbine, originally slated to begin on April 18, has been postponed indefinitely, putting even more track workers — many of whom have little means — in a jobless situation. Lawson is worried about the future of his industry if the shutdown and postponement goes on for too long.
“There’s just no money right now and that’s the problem,” Lawson told the Toronto Sun on Wednesday. “We’re working with the government on a relief fund, but we’re putting so many grooms and hot workers and everyone else out of work. And despite the perception that horse owners are wealthy, they really aren’t. There’s a very small handful of owners that are wealthy and the rest of them are hard-working people. And they can’t make this work without any sort of funding. And the longer this goes on, the bigger threat it is to this entire industry.
“Hopefully we can get it under a control a little bit because I don’t think, like a lot of industries, the horse racing industry is going to be able to tolerate (a shut down) for that long,” added Kevin Attard, one of Woodbine’s leading trainers, pointing out that many of the track workers live pay cheque to pay cheque and many of the owners are small-time business people who would probably would walk away from the sport if they face financial insecurity.
“It comes down to feeding your family or feeding your hobby,” Attard. “Right now, you can see the writing on the wall.”
There’s no clear answer as to if, and when, the NHL will return to action after the league paused its season March 12 due to the coronavirus outbreak. The playoffs were slated to start in April. But it’s unknown if the regular season will pick up where it left off or if the league will…NHL Rumors: League Asks All 31 Teams For Available August Home Dates — NESN.com
The playoffs were slated to start in April. But it’s unknown if the regular season will pick up where it left off or if the league will go into an altered playoff format. For what it’s worth, commissioner Gary Bettman is optimistic a 2019-20 Stanley Cup champion will be crowned. But could the league be looking at playing games late into the summer?
TSN’s Bob McKenzie on Tuesday alluded to such on “Insider Trading.” “Earlier (Tuesday), the National Hockey League did request from each of its 31 member clubs to provide available home dates for the month of August,” McKenzie said. Of course, teams would need to figure out how to handle players who contracts expire June 30 if games were to be played well into the summer. The NHL also reportedly asked its players to continue self-quarantining until April 6 — an additional 10 days than the original March 27 plan. Even if games go into August and beyond, the NHL still plans to have a full 2020-21 season.
The start of the thoroughbred racing season in Ontario has been postponed, Woodbine Entertainment announced on Monday. Read MoreStart to Woodbine thoroughbred season put on hold — Toronto Sun