Mets manager Luis Rojas, the "bulk"of his coaching staff, and "many" players will remain in Port St. Lucie to continue workouts, reports Jon Heyman.
Major League Baseball canceled spring training on Thursday and delayed the start of the regular season by at least two weeks due to the coronavirus outbreak in the United States and around the world, and later announced that players would have the choice of remaining in their spring training cities, returning to the home-city of their team, or returning to their respective home-cities.
At the Mets' facility on Sunday morning, players were working out, according to Mike Puma of the New York Post.
Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen, who spoke Saturday on a conference call, was not yet sure what the plan was, and stressed that the primary concern was the safety of the players, staff, and fans.
"We are obviously aware of Major League Baseball's three options for the players and our first primary focus of concern is our players, our staff's safety, obviously the safety of our fans and everybody that's part of the Mets and baseball community here," Van Wagenen said. "A number of our players are going through their own thought processes to determine what their immediate plans will be. Our focus and our encouragement is first and foremost about player and family well-being and we are encouraging people to talk to their families and make sure they're focusing on their health and safety above and beyond the competition of baseball activities.
"We are in the process of working through schedules and accommodations to make sure all of our players have all of the resources that they need here in St. Lucie or in New York if they decide to travel and stay in New York, and we'll be working very closely with the players who are returning home in conjunction with our health and performance and development staff."
While the start of the regular season has so far only been delayed two weeks, SNY's Andy Martino reported on Friday that there was "widespread skepticism" among people in baseball that there would be games played in April at all.
Speaking on Saturday, Van Wagenen said that the only Mets employee to be tested so far for coronavirus was front office executive Donovan Mitchell Sr., whose son, Donovan, tested positive last week. Mitchell Sr.'s test came back negative.
At the time spring training was suspended, players had been preparing for the season for roughly a month, so it's fair to believe they won't need to start from scratch whenever things officially resume. Still, they'll need to ramp back up, and players continuing to work out/do baseball activity in the interim will likely help that eventual process.
But as Van Wagenen said on Saturday, the main concern is player, staff, and fan safety over baseball. And the coronavirus situation remains an evolving one, with 2,952 confirmed cases and 57 deaths in the United States as of Sunday morning, and people being urged to practice social distancing.
In a potential sign of things to come, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported Sunday that the league is expected to send out guidelines advising teams to end organized group workouts at both spring training and home ballparks, though camps would stay open for "individual needs."