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Podcast episode 2019: Baseball has started. Will it finish?

One weekend into the season, MLB has major question marks

Miami Marlins v Atlanta Braves Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

This week on the podcast, we talk about the ups and downs of the opening weekend for the Dodgers, but also delve into the details of the Marlins COVID-19 outbreak and the possible ramifications for the sport, at least as we knew of on Monday night.

Long story, short: MLB is going to try and power through it for now, and figure things out as they go.

As of Monday night, 11 Marlins players and two coaches tested positive for COVID-19, and the decision to play Sunday’s game in Philadelphia after knowing about four of those positive tests centrally involved a pair of old friends in manager Don Mattingly and shortstop Miguel Rojas. That number has since grown to 15 players.

Miami’s games through Sunday were postponed, as were the Phillies‘ games through Thursday, after they played against the infected Marlins.

Dodgers pitcher David Price, who decided not to play this season, cited health concerns, and tweeted Monday that part of the reason was commissioner Rob Manfred didn’t put players’ health and safety first. Manfred, in an interview on MLB Network Monday night, disagreed with Price, saying that postponing two Marlins games were “above and beyond” the health and safety protocols. Sure.

Please send any and all podcast questions to tblapodcast@gmail.com, or tweet us at @ericstephen or @jacobburch. Thanks as always to producer extraordinaire Brian Salvatore.

Dodgers rewind

Justin Turner has been red hot to start the season, with a four-game hitting streak so far. James Loney started off 2008 with a 15-game hitting streak, the third longest by a Dodger to start the season.

Los Angeles Dodgers v Philadelphia Phillies Photo by Rob Tringali/SportsChrome/Getty Images

Loney is our rewind this week, remembering the former Dodgers first-round pick who most teams wanted as a pitcher but Logan White picked him as a hitter. Loney was the regular first baseman for the Dodgers for just over five years, and hit a memorable grand slam that turned around Game 1 of the 2008 NLDS at Wrigley Field.

He co-holds the Dodgers record with 9 RBI in a game, doing so with a two-homer game at Coors Field in September 2006. Loney has played the fourth-most games at first base by an LA Dodger.

The Dodgers traded Loney as part of the mammoth Punto trade in August 2012, and the day it went down nobody could really talk about the deal yet since it wasn’t official. But Loney was scratched from the lineup that night against the Marlins and when asked why, he deadpanned, “I don’t have good numbers against (Nathan) Eovaldi. I’m 0 for 0.”

Perfect.

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Episode link (time: 58:44)