It has been a little more than a month since the Los Angeles Dodgers officially completed their trade with the Boston Red Sox to acquire Mookie Betts and David Price, but when they will get a look at either is unknown.
Major League Baseball, like other professional sports and essentially the United States economy as a whole, has been shut down in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. MLB initially delayed the start of the season by two weeks — with a soft target of April 9 — but that has since been pushed back.
With the season not starting any earlier than the middle of May, the Dodgers joined the group of teams to close their Spring Training facility. The club initially kept Camelback Ranch open for players to hold involuntary workouts.
Had the pandemic not become an issue, Opening Day at Dodger Stadium was scheduled for Thursday. In light of there not yet being baseabll, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts joined Joe Davis and Orel Hershiser for a Q&A session on the team’s YouTube channel.
Roberts used it as an opportunity to thank Dodgers fans for their endless support and encouraged them to spend time with family members to help fill the void left by baseball:
“First off, I just want to say thank you. From myself, the players, the staff, the organization, ownership. You guys are the best fans in all of sports, bar none. As we say in the clubhouse, check the numbers. The Dodger fans show up. Thank you for all the support, all the positivity. You guys support our players to the end. I think that in this time right now, just enjoy your families and the time you do get with your families, make the most of it. Stay safe, be very mindful and thoughtful of other people that you could affect. I think for me it’s a sense of gratitude. I wish everyone well.”
Fans’ continued support has been directly seen in attendance, which the Dodgers have led all of baseball in for the past seven seasons. Last year the Dodgers drew 3,974,309 (49,066 average) in attendance for 81 home games, which included 28 sellouts.
It was the 10th largest in Major League history and broke a franchise record that was set in 2018, when Game 163 increased final attendance to 3,857,500. That mark narrowly eclipsed the previous franchise record — 3,857,036 during the 2007 season.
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