5:03 PM ET
Major League Baseball players won’t be needing their uniforms for a while, so MLB and Fanatics executive chairman Michael Rubin have announced plans to use the fabric instead to make at least 1 million masks and hospital gowns to support health care workers during the coronavirus pandemic.
“The COVID-19 crisis has compelled our country to be more collaborative, innovative and strategic than ever before,” Rubin said in a statement. “As the demand for masks and gowns have surged, we’re fortunate to have teamed up with Major League Baseball to find a unique way to support our frontline workers in this fight to stem the virus, who are in dire need of essential resources.
“We have already begun production of up to one million masks and gowns from the fabric used to make the official MLB jerseys and then donating to hospitals and emergency management personnel throughout Pennsylvania with the goal of expanding to New York and New Jersey.”
Fanatics is repurposing its manufacturing plant in Easton, Pennsylvania, to help meet the high demand for the masks and gowns. They will be created with the official fabric that Philadelphia Phillies and New York Yankees players wear on the field.
For now, these masks and gowns will get distributed to hospitals and medical workers throughout Pennsylvania as long as the need exists.
“We hope this effort can play a part in coming together as a community to help us through this challenging situation,” said Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred.