Nick Markakis is opting back in
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Nick Markakis opts out of the 2020 season

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Braves outfielder Nick Markakis has opted out of the 2020 season.

In announcing his decision, Markakis said, “with everything that’s going on not just in baseball but in the world, it makes you open your eyes. I’ve got three kids that I’ve missed for 11 years now.” He added that he recently spoke with teammate Freddie Freemanwho has COVID-19 and has been quite sick — calling it “tough and eye opening . . . he didn’t sound good.” Markakis said that “the decision I’m making to sit out this year is the right one for me and my family.”

Markakis, a 14-year big league veteran who turned 36 this past offseason, hit .285/.356/.420 with nine homers and 62 RBI over 116 games in 2019. He was under contract for $4 million in 2020 and was likely to be the Braves starting right fielder once again. He is the second Braves player to opt out following pitcher Félix Hernández.

Doubleheader between Cardinals and Tigers postponed

Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
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A doubleheader between the St. Louis Cardinals and Detroit Tigers this week is being postponed to allow more time for additional COVID-19 testing.

MLB opted to postpone Thursday’s doubleheader to continue additional testing while players and staff are quarantined before the team returns to play. More details about the Cardinals’ resumption of play will be announced later this week.

The Cardinals had a series against Pittsburgh set to start on Monday postponed after a weekend series against the Cubs was scrapped due to three positive coronavirus tests.

St. Louis had two more players and a staff member test positive for the virus on Friday and have had eight positive players overall, including star catcher Yadier Molina.

There have now been 29 games postponed by Major League Baseball because of coronavirus concerns. The Cardinals have not played since July 30 and have had 15 games scrapped.

Miami and Philadelphia each had seven games postponed earlier and have returned to the field since the disruptions.

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