Before we get into any of this, let me make one thing clear. THE CORONA VIRUS IS NOT SUPER DEADLY BUT IS A CREDIBLE THREAT. Italy has been shut down. Large public gatherings are being banned in the US. The NBA season has been suspended. March Madness will be played without fans.
Please, please, please check the CDC or WHO for CREDIBLE information. If you feel sick, stay home. WASH YOUR FREAKING HANDS.
With all that in mind, the COVID-19 virus has begun to affect public gatherings and the Phillies’ home opener could be next. April 2nd is when the Phillies are supposed to face the Brewers in South Philly and I fully expect not a single fan will witness it live.
The expectations for Phillies fans are high for 2020, but no one will be in Citizens Bank Park on April 2nd. This hasn’t happened yet, but if the 2nd highest-grossing sporting event of the year (March Madness) is playing without fans, you can bet MLB won’t be far behind.
Something about not having fans is soul-sucking. The only time other time we have witnessed no fans at a Major League Baseball game was in 2015. The White Sox faced the Orioles that day in Baltimore without a single fan in the park in the face of city riots.
The Mariners are avoiding home games. MLB teams are already pulling scouts to assure their health and safety, including the Phillies.
Ladies and gentlemen the MLB will be affected by this pandemic. The question is when not if.
I, for one, hope that the Phanatic’s suit doubles as a hazmat suit, so that he’ll still be able to prance around the fanless stands. How it will affect the Phillies’ play will be something to watch. We all know a player like Bryce Harper plays off the fans’ energy. How will they handle no one?
Baseball is important, but health is a necessity.
We can still interact as fans online. The games will still be broadcasted. Hopefully, by the end of April, life will be back to normal and so will the sport we love.
Go Phillies. Stay Healthy.
Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports
Alec Kostival graduated from La Salle University with a degree in communication with a focus in mass media and journalism. He covered high school sports for the Chestnut Hill Local. He has interned with the Reading Fightin Phils and the Philadelphia Eagles.