The Mourning After: Last Night's Most Troubling News This Morning

Nick Kyrgios (l.) wants you, and the guys he plays against, to put a damn mask on. Yoenis Cespedes (r.) forgot the part of the opt-out process where he lets his employer know.
Nick Kyrgios (l.) wants you, and the guys he plays against, to put a damn mask on. Yoenis Cespedes (r.) forgot the part of the opt-out process where he lets his employer know.
Illustration: Getty

While the Mets were pulling their weekly Mets’ing with Yoenis Cespedes and his decision to opt-out/Irish goodbye the season, the rest of the league continues to try and treat the Coronavirus much like an annoying co-worker with the hopes that if you wait until lunch to walk by their desk, everything will be ok. The St. Louis Cardinals remained quarantined in Milwaukee, their weekend series with the Brewers already postponed and their mid-week one in Detroit certainly no more than a 50-50 bet to go ahead. Even the Cubs were grousing about having to go to St. Louis next weekend, though grousing about having to go to St. Louis is just a part of the life of an MLB player. And an understandable one at that.


The Cardinals being the latest team to be a traveling incubus circus, along with rumors that they got to be that way by not exactly following protocols, is a wonderful juxtaposition for those that like to mock Cardinals fans. It is almost certainly true that at least half of THE BEST FANS IN BASEBALL think COVID-19 is a hoax, and a good 80 percent of them think wearing masks and shutdowns is a violation of their rights, preventing them from such beloved activities like huffing pigshit, burning any book with the word “Black” in it, and waving a cross over their daughter’s genitals to keep the demons away. So seeing their players endanger themselves, teammates, and surrounding staff by violating protocols and safety measures THE RIGHT WAY will also jeopardize their ability to play baseball THE RIGHT WAY, or any way. This is basically a St. Louis baseball fan Turing test.

Elsewhere in Coronaville, Nick Kyrgios released a video explaining why he wouldn’t be playing in the U.S. Open in New York at the end of the month. And in beseeching his fellow pros to take the virus and protocols as seriously as possible, he clearly did not pull too many punches when it came to Novak Djokovic and Alex Zverev. Kyrgios mentioned lazily put together exhibitions, just like the kind Djokovic had put together that saw a few players test positive during or after, including Djokovic himself. Or dancing on tables, which was clearly a shot at Zverev — who is the answer to the question of what would Dazed And Confused look like if it were filmed in modern-day Germany (Scorpions tickets, main priority of the summer!) — who played in Djokovic’s tournament and then filmed himself partying at a club even after the positive tests stemming from that tournament showed up.

Kyrgios isn’t even the biggest name to decide he won’t be in New York, as top-ranked woman Ash Barty announced last week she wouldn’t be playing. Rafael Nadal has been rumored to be skipping out as well, but so far the only true evidence of that is that he’s only been practicing on clay in prep for September’s French Open.

In a sign that some things are still somewhat normal, the Toronto Maple Leafs began their customary first-round immolation, being thoroughly outplayed by the Columbus Blue Jackets, seeing Freddie Andersen give up a soft goal (six more weeks of summer?), and the players and Toronto media immediately fight with each other afterward. The Leafs are a $113 million snuff film every spring, but this time they have a real chance to be a summer hit. And they said summer action films were dead for 2020.

We can't be too careful. Two guys in an airport...talking? It's a little fishy.