It is a whole new ballgame — under coronavirus rules — when Major League Baseball resumes starting with spring training this week.
First off, do not even think about spitting. That may seem anathema to fans and players alike. Tom Hanks famously said in "A League of Their Own," "There's no crying in baseball," but he could have just as easily said, "There's no not-spitting in baseball."
Not to fear. MLB is offering players an alternative to those who are used to packing tobacco in their jaw: chewing gum, CNN reports.
It is all an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Players on opposite teams also are encouraged to "not socialize, fraternize, or come within six feet of each other before the game, during warm-ups, in between innings, or after the game.
All personnel will have to complete COVID-19 screening and testing before entering club facilities. All teams also must submit coronavirus actions plans for approval by the league.
Dugout and bullpen spaces also must be expanded.
One would assume irate managers and players are also being encouraged not to yell directly into the umpire's face.
Full workouts can begin Friday, and the shortened 60-day season begins for teams July 23 or 24.
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