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Mike Leake, Ryan Zimmerman opt out of 2020 MLB season due to coronavirus concerns

As Major League Baseball nears its return, several players have been forced to wrestle with a difficult decision: Is the risk of exposure to the coronavirus worth it?

On Monday, veteran Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Mike Leake became the first player to definitively say no, it is not worth risking his health and the health of his loved ones to play baseball through a pandemic. Joe Ross and Ryan Zimmerman, two members of the Washington Nationals, also decided not to play in 2020. Last week, Zimmerman — whose mother has multiple sclerosis — explained deciding whether to play is a complex decision that will weigh heavily on several players.