New York Mets’ GM Brodie Van Wagenen: ‘This is bigger than baseball’

Simeon Woods-Richardson

Major League Baseball decided to cancel the remaining spring training games and push back the start of the new season “at least” two weeks because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The campaign was supposed to begin in late March but that is very much up in the air now. As a result, every team has been affected, including the New York Mets.

Each and every team’s plans have been derailed, and they are making decisions on the go. The Mets spent most of Saturday figuring out how to proceed from this point on, logistically and on other levels.

“We’re operating right now that this is bigger than baseball,” New York Mets general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said in a press conference.

Mets officials met with MLB and MiLB players in their camps, and told them some pointers on how to proceed to protect their health and their families’. The players now have the option of going home, while others may prefer to stay in New York. There is a sense among the team brass that most of them will stay in Port St. Lucie, getting ready for the season.

As a result, Van Wagenen spent some time determining how many uniformed and non-uniformed staff members would be needed to accommodate the players left in training camp.

Some staffers were with the players on Saturday morning, assisting them in their workouts, and giving them treatment. Some players also lifted some weights and performed light baseball-related activities.

“Given the pace at which information is coming in, and circumstances are changing, we really are only focused on this afternoon, today’s schedule,” Van Wagenen said.

The Mets are trying to find answers

It’s not yet clear when opening day will take place, but it won’t be before April 9. The New York Mets, like every other team, will try to find some answers in the upcoming days.

According to Van Wagenen, the Mets want to ensure that their players are comfortable. The team will provide food and accommodations for those who wish to stay in Port St. Lucie, and for those who leave, the ballclub will monitor local and global travel restrictions.

“Are we concerned?” Van Wagenen said. “We’re very thoughtful and concerned right now with the well-being of our players and their families, and will continue to be, and will want to make sure we have the best information as quickly as possible so that players can make the good decisions that are best for their particular situations.”