Within two days, the local sports world virtually stopped as teams including the Sacramento Republic FC, Stockton Heat and Stockton Ports announced that they were halting their seasons to help contain the coronavirus.
“The health and safety of our fans, guests, players and staff will always be our first priority. In coordination with the USL and local health experts, and with the support of Major League Soccer, we will continue to monitor developments and support the health of our community. Republic FC will announce rescheduled matches at a later date and work with partners and community leaders to reschedule any appearances, events, watch parties, or gatherings of fans and staff,” a press release from the Republic FC said on March 12.
The Stockton Ports, whose season was to begin April 9 at Visalia, shared Minor League Baseball’s statement: “In light of the current coronavirus outbreak, and after consultation with medical professionals and our partners at Major League Baseball, Minor League Baseball will delay the start of the 2020 Championship Season. We will continue to monitor the developments and will announce additional information about the 2020 season at a later date. We will work with Major League Baseball and our community partners to resume play as soon as it is safe to do so. The health and safety of Minor League Baseball fans, players and executives is our top priority, and our thoughts are with those around the world who have been affected by this outbreak.”
The Sacramento River Cats also cancelled their scheduled March 22 exhibition game with the San Francisco Giants, stating that “nothing is more important than the health and safety of our local community and we will continue to be in close contact with local government and health agencies to inform our decisions moving forward.”