KBO suspends play due to COVID cases

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - APRIL 03: Kiwwom Heros fans cheer during the KBO League game between Sumsung Lions and Kiwoom Heroes at Gocheok Sky Dome on April 03, 2021 in Seoul, South Korea. (Photo by Han Myung-Gu/Getty Images)
SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA - APRIL 03: Kiwwom Heros fans cheer during the KBO League game between Sumsung Lions and Kiwoom Heroes at Gocheok Sky Dome on April 03, 2021 in Seoul, South Korea. (Photo by Han Myung-Gu/Getty Images) /
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Although the pandemic is not over, professional sports have come back in almost full force. Fans are in the stands, and full seasons are taking place once again. After leagues such as the KBO were the first to return in 2020, having sports back in our lives, and a full season at that, is a sign that things are returning to normal.

But this also ignores the spectre that is the pandemic. With varients of the COVID virus appearing, and issues with getting people around the globe immunized, it seemed almost inevitable that another wave could occur. These leagues may be doing everything possible to keep the players safe, but no one can predict how people will behave in any situation.

KBO suspends play due to COVID

Such a situation has taken place with the KBO. After a guest at the hotel used by the NC Dinos and Hanwha Eagles tested positive for COVID, the league canceled multiple games over the past weekend. Now, with five reported cases amongst the players, the league has suspended play until August 9.

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In doing so, they have become the first league to suspend play due to a recurrence of the pandemic. This stoppage will only cost the league approximately a week of action, as there had already been a break built in to the schedule due to the upcoming Olympics, which has had its own COVID issues.

This stoppage is also primarily a matter of being cautious. Even though five players have tested positive, there has not been a real outbreak in the league. Just as in the majors, teams can add healthy players to the roster without having to send others to the minors. And, such a small percentage of positive tests does not threaten the league’s ability to finish out the season.

Nonetheless, this is a reminder that the pandemic is continuing. While sports are back, and people are beginning to go about their lives once again, the planet is not out of the woods. The KBO having to suspend games for a week due to these positive tests is a return to reality.

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The KBO has suspended their season until August 9 due to COVID. While they will only miss one week of action, it is a wakeup call.