Major League Baseball to Participate in Largest COVID-19 Antibody Test on Employees in U.S.

Nick Kangadis | April 17, 2020
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In a move that is reportedly going to help scientists get a grasp on the prevalence of COVID-19, around 10,000 employees from Major League Baseball (MLB) will be undergoing antibody testing for the virus.

According to CNBC:

The goal of the study is to get a sense of the prevalence of Covid-19 infections among the U.S. population in hopes of helping researchers figure out how many people might have been exposed but suffered no symptoms. That information could help public officials determine when it’s safe to ease up on restrictions meant to curb the spread of the pandemic.

The study comes as the sports industry is among the hardest hit by the coronavirus-related restrictions, which limits large gatherings of people around most of the country. Among those is the MLB, whose baseball season was cut short with no word yet on when it will return. Unlike other popular American sports, the MLB’s employee and player base encompasses a vast range of ages and geographies.

The testing is in conjunction with researchers from both Stanford University and the University of Southern California (USC) and is said to be the "largest coronavirus antibody test on employees" in the U.S.

MLB is also weighing multiple options to get the 2020 season started, including a realignment of divisions based on spring training sites in Arizona (Cactus League) and Florida (Grapefruit League). The move would allow for an abbreviated 2020 season, and teams would be aligned based on the geography of their spring training homes.