With the start of the 2020 season just three weeks away, Los Angeles Angels superstar Mike Trout is still unsure whether he will be in the lineup for the opener.
Trout's wife, Jessica, is expecting the couple's first child in August and the three-time American League (AL) MVP still has concerns about how the coronavirus pandemic will affect his ability to attend the birth.
As of now, Trout's plan is to play in the virus-delayed 60-game season, but a lot will hinge on how he feels over the next couple weeks.
"Honestly, I still don't feel comfortable with the baby coming," Trout said on a Zoom call on Friday.
"There's a lot of things on my mind. I'm trying to be the safest and most cautious to get through the season. It's going to be tough."
Trout has had discussions with general manager Billy Eppler and manager Joe Maddon on the trepidations of playing during a pandemic with a first child due.
"I've got to do right by my family," Trout said. "A lot of guys have questions. It's a tough, crazy situation in this country and in the world. Nobody has the answers."
Maddon said he empathises with everything Trout is facing.
"Everybody's truth matters right now," he said. "That's the one thing I have appealed to our guys. There's so much buried information I've encouraged everyone to think for themselves. I'm appealing to our guys to be as informed as they can and then arrive at their own truth. Tell me what they feel."
As part of MLB's COVID-19 guidelines, players can decide to opt out of the season at any time. Sever players already have said they will not play this season, including Mike Leake of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Ian Desmond of the Colorado Rockies and Washington Nationals team-mates Joe Ross and Ryan Zimmerman.