The Orioles won’t be the visiting team against the Marlins in their home ballpark.
Commissioner Rob Manfred confirmed tonight on MLB Network that Tuesday’s game also has been postponed and won’t be moved to Camden Yards.
Manfred indicated that the next game could be played Wednesday night, which begins the Orioles’ first home series of the truncated season, if COVID-19 testing on the Marlins produces favorable results.
This is based on the assumption that government officials will allow the Marlins to play at Camden Yards.
Eleven players and two coaches tested positive, according to multiple reports. The Orioles are flying back to Baltimore later tonight.
“Our first concern obviously is the health of the players and their families and making sure that we do everything possible to minimize the spread of the virus among our employees,” Manfred said. “We’ve been fortunate so far. We’ve done tens of thousands of tests, our positive rate has been 0.4 percent, so we feel like the protocols have worked pretty well.
“Not withstanding that fact, we have made some decisions. The Miami Marlins will not play their two games in Miami tonight and tomorrow. We’re doing some additional testing. If the testing results are acceptable, the Marlins will resume play in Baltimore on Wednesday against the Orioles.”
Manfred didn’t know whether the two postponed games could be rescheduled for Camden Yards.
“Again, we’re waiting to see exactly what we get in terms of test results before we make a decision,” he said. “Right now, the only thing that’s firm is if the test results result in negatives for the rest of the team, we would play at least two in Baltimore on Wednesday and Thursday.”
The Marlins remain in Philadelphia while waiting for results that should be available later tonight and they’re in the process of finding replacement players for their 30-man roster. Manfred is expecting to provide an update Tuesday morning.
Due to their proximity to Baltimore, the Marlins could have traveled by bus Tuesday if cleared to resume playing and been in uniform for a night game. But that scenario is off the table.
The Orioles flew from Boston to Miami yesterday after winning back-to-back games. They’ve been staying in their hotel until able to leave for the airport.
Players and staff have been tested yesterday and again today.
The teams were supposed to play two games in Miami followed by two in Baltimore. The Orioles will remain at Camden Yards for a weekend series against the Rays, followed by three games versus the Yankees.
Major League Baseball is faced with its first pandemic crisis of the season less than a week into it.
Tonight’s game between the Yankees and Phillies at Citizens Bank Park also was postponed after the Marlins used the visiting clubhouse over the weekend.
The Orioles have strictly adhered to the protocols set up in order to prevent the situation that unfolded with the Marlins, including using both clubhouses during summer training camp, building dugout extensions in the stands and dividing personnel - including the media - into three tiers with separate entrances into the ballpark.
The next challenge is coming with the Marlins’ arrival later this week, if permissible, and their use of the visiting clubhouse.