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7:25 PM ET, July 4, 2020

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 Top News: 
ESPN:
31 MLB players positive for coronavirus after first round of tests  —  Thirty-one players were positive for COVID-19 in Major League Baseball's first round of coronavirus testing, the league and players' union announced Friday.  —  Seven staff members also tested positive.
RELATED:
Jeff Passan / ESPN:
The 2020 MLB season is a series of tests — and the first big one comes today  —  Training camps around Major League Baseball officially open Friday, marking another step toward the game's return.  As momentous as that might sound, as positive as that might seem, Friday is a vital day to MLB for an entirely different reason.
Marly Rivera / ESPN:
Yankees' Masahiro Tanaka struck in head by line drive, taken to hospital  —  New York Yankees pitcher Masahiro Tanaka has been taken to New York Presbyterian Hospital for further evaluation and testing after he was drilled on the right side of the head by a Giancarlo Stanton line drive Saturday afternoon.
MLB Baseball News, Scores, Standings …:
MLB cancels All-Star Game for first time since 1945  —  By subscribing, you are agreeing to Yahoo's  —  LOS ANGELES (AP) — Dodger Stadium's 40-year wait to host the All-Star Game is going to last even longer.  —  The game scheduled for July 14 was canceled Friday because of the coronavirus pandemic …
RELATED:
Bob Nightengale / USA Today:
With pregnant wife, Angels star Mike Trout unsure if he'll play in 2020: ‘Playing it by ear’  —  Mike Trout, the Los Angeles Angels' three-time MVP and widely regarded as baseball's greatest player, is wary about starting the 2020 season with his wife expecting their first baby in August.
Matt Breen / The Philadelphia Inquirer:
Aaron Nola, two other Phillies players placed on COVID-19 injured list  —  Aaron Nola's status for the start of the season is in question as the Phillies No. 1 starter was placed this week on the COVID-19 Injured List, according to a source.  —  Joe Girardi said Saturday that Nola …
TC Zencka / MLB Trade Rumors:
Freddie Freeman, Three Other Braves Test Positive For COVID-19  —  A quartet of Atlanta Braves tested positive for COVID-19: Freddie Freeman, Pete Kozma, Touki Toussaint, and Will Smith, per Sportscaster Kelly Crull.  Though the teams do not have to release the names of the players …
Discussion: Talking Chop
Jeff Todd / MLB Trade Rumors:
Tommy Pham Tests Positive For COVID-19  —  The Padres announced today that outfielder Tommy Pham has tested positive for the coronavirus, as AJ Cassavell of MLB.com was among those to cover on Twitter.  Pham authorized release of his personal medical information.  Fortunately, he's said to be asymptomatic at the moment.
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Welington Castillo Opts Out Of 2020 Season  —  Veteran catcher Welington Castillo has opted out of the 2020 season, Nationals manager Dave Martinez told reporters Friday (Twitter link via the Washington Post's Jesse Dougherty).  Castillo inked a minor league contract with the Nationals …
Derrick Goold / St. Louis Post-Dispatch:
Cardinals pitchers Cabrera, Sanchez test positive, as other players have their report to camp delayed  —  The Cardinals had two pitchers test positive for COVID-19 during their entry exams this week for preseason camp, and the revelation of those tests could further delay other players from reporting to workouts.
Discussion: baseballmusings.com
Vinnie Duber / MLB Baseball News, Scores …:
Tim Anderson leads growing White Sox toward contention: 'He's a man'  —  By subscribing, you are agreeing to Yahoo's  —  Growing up.  —  It's what this rebuild is all about.  —  When you start building from the bottom, the name of the game is acquiring young, talented players …
Discussion: NBCSports.com
Evan Grant / Dallas Morning News:
Rangers relief pitcher Brett Martin tests positive for COVID-19, says he feels ‘perfectly fine now’  —  Martin presented ‘mild’ symptoms earlier in the week.  Friday is the first day of workouts for MLB clubs. … If the Rangers were unsure of the severity of the COVID-19 outbreak …
 
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 More News: 
Anthony Fenech / Detroit Free Press:
Detroit Tigers' opening summer camp workout: 5 observations
Discussion: Bless You Boys
Tim Kurkjian / ESPN:
Tim Kurkjian's Baseball Fix: Major League Baseball gave us plenty of reasons to despise it …
Discussion: MLB Baseball News …
Deesha Thosar / New York Daily News:
New Mets manager Luis Rojas is calm, but the storm is coming
Gabriel Burns / Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Braves hold first team workouts Friday
Discussion: Amazin' Avenue
 Earlier Picks: 
Bob Nightengale / USA Today:
After blowback, MLB commissioner Rob Manfred clarifies comments on 60-game season
Discussion: MLB Trade Rumors and New York Post
Steve Adams / MLB Trade Rumors:
Blue Jays Claim Breyvic Valera, Add Three Others To 60-Man Pool
Discussion: Bluebird Banter and Sportsnet.ca
 

 
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