For all those baseball fans looking forward to the National Baseball Hall of Fame ceremony in late July to see Derek Jeter inducted, they'll have to wait until next year.
Due to the coronavirus, Hall of Fame board members pushed back the ceremony until July 25, 2021 instead of keeping it on the intended July 24-26 dates of this year.
"Induction Weekend is a celebration of our National Pastime and its greatest legends, and while we are disappointed to cancel this incredibly special event, the Board of Directors' overriding concern is the health and well-being of our new inductees, our Hall of Fame members, our wonderful fans and the hundreds of staff it takes to present the weekend's events in all of its many facets," Jane Forbes Clark, chairman of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, said in a statement on Wednesday. "We care deeply about every single person who visits Cooperstown."
Jeter, Larry Walker, Ted Simmons (Modern Baseball Era Committee inductee) and the late Marvin Miller were elected into the Hall earlier this year, but given Jeter's Yankee roots, the turnout was expected to be massive. Cooperstown was thinking a flock of 100,000 baseball lovers and Yankee fans alike were going to witness Jeter officially cap off his playing days with this ultimate honor.
"How could you have an induction ceremony?" Andre Dawson, a 2010 Hall of Fame inductee, said before it was announced it was pushed back. "I wouldn't want to see it happen. You got to look at the well-being of people. You look at the older guys that come here. Think about the crowd. It's just way too risky.
"I know how important it is to the people in upstate New York for the induction, and how pleasurable it is to us, to all of the Hall-of-Famers, but you can't bring in everyone, not when people are dying at home."
So the 2020 class will combine with the 2021 class for a much bigger ceremony.