The COVID-19 pandemic already delayed the start of the minor league baseball season. On Monday, plans for a Midsummer Classic at Jackie Robinson Ballpark were permanently scrapped.
The Florida State League announced the cancellation of its 2020 All-Star Game, originally scheduled for June 23 in Daytona Beach. The Jack last hosted the event 13 years ago.
"The Tortugas, under the leadership of President Ryan Keur, have worked diligently to host our premier summer event," FSL President Terry Reynolds said in a statement. "To the fans, the sponsors and the partners who would have set a new standard of excellence for our event, we say thank you!
"We cannot wait to get the Florida State League season underway but the health and safety of our fans, players and staff is our utmost priority."
Additionall All-Star festivities, including a home run derby, a celebrity softball game and a “fan fest” on June 22, were also canceled.
Awarded the rights to host the game last November, Keur called it a "testament" to the recent investments made by the City and the franchise's ownership.
"A lot of work had already gone into putting on a great show in 2020," Keur said. "We're fairly disappointed, but completely understanding, that there isn't going to be an All-Star Game in the Florida State League, or any other league around the minors this year."
The Tortugas have already placed a bid to host the 2021 All-Star Game, Keur added. That could very much depend on whether the team ceases operations, considering it remains on Minor League Baseball’s chopping block.
[READ MORE: Daytona Tortugas president “fairly confident” team will survive contraction]
Last month, Major League Baseball and Minor League Baseball released joint statements that negotiations were ongoing and no decision for contraction has been made.
As for this season, Keur anticipates a summer startup, potentially as soon as July 1. With Florida in the midst of Phase 1 of reopening, the Tortugas are preparing for fans to fill the stands.
"I don't anticipate empty ballparks being a viable solution," Keur said. "Maybe there will be a limited amount, but I anticipate attended events being common in the minors."