Major League Baseball (MLB) commissioner Rob Manfred called for "optimism that is synonymous with Opening Day" and "unflinching determination" despite uncertainty over when the season will start.
The first MLB matches of 2020 were due to take place on Thursday, but the coronavirus pandemic has delayed the start of the season.
Manfred wrote an open letter to baseball fans amid the COVID-19 crisis on a day that is usually so eagerly awaited, stressing the importance of following advice from health experts and the government.
He also expressed his pride over donations made by the baseball community for those in need during such unprecedented times.
Manfred wrote: "Opening Day holds an important place in our hearts. It signifies the arrival of spring, the promise of new beginnings, the return of following your favourite team on a long journey filled with twists and turns, and the hope that your team will put together a magical season you will remember forever.
"Today is unlike any Opening Day in Major League Baseball's long history. We need to call on the optimism that is synonymous with Opening Day and the unflinching determination required to navigate an entire baseball season to help us through the challenging situation currently facing us all.
"We can do this together by following the direction of our public health experts and government officials to collectively address this global pandemic. Baseball will return, just as soon as it’s safe to do so. You can find helpful information at MLB.com/covid19resources.
"I'm proud of how the baseball community has rallied to respond to this unprecedented challenge.
"In a short period of time under difficult and rapidly changing circumstances, we have met the needs of Minor League players by creating a level of uniform compensation for them, made a $1million joint donation with the MLBPA to Feeding America and Meals on Wheels America, and our Clubs have committed $30million to ballpark employees. In addition, we will be shining a light on worthy charities that are involved with the COVID-19 response. If you are able to help, you can make contributions to these organizations at MLB.com/give.
"Throughout our history, baseball has helped us get through difficult times. Baseball will continue to be here for you as we face these challenges together as a community and we look forward to when we can safely get back on the field and hear the words, 'Play Ball.'"
|Coronavirus: MLB to open with Yankees v Nationals and Giants v Dodgers on July 23|
|Coronavirus: MLB explains testing delays after complaints|
|Texas Rangers slugger Joey Gallo tests positive for coronavirus|
|Washington Nationals GM Mike Rizzo slams MLB for delayed test results|
|Coronavirus: Nationals reliever Doolittle blasts US over COVID-19 response|
|Cleveland Indians manager favours changing nickname|
|Coronavirus: Braves pitcher Hernandez opts out of 2020 MLB season|
|Coronavirus: Yankees pair LeMahieu and Cessa test positive for COVID-19|
|Coronavirus: Dodgers´ Price opts out of MLB season due to COVID-19 concerns|
|Coronavirus: Giants´ Posey considering opting out of 2020 season|
|Coronavirus: Freddie Freeman among four Braves with COVID-19|
|Cleveland Indians to discuss changing name amid pressure|
|Angels star Trout still unsure if he´ll play in 2020|
|Coronavirus: Blue Jays granted waiver to train in Canada|
|Cubs pitcher Quintana has thumb surgery for laceration|
|Yankees GM ´very optimistic´ Judge will be ready for opening day|
|Rockies OF Desmond opts out of MLB season|
|Nationals duo Zimmerman and Ross join Arizona´s Leake in opting out of MLB season|
|MLB season will be sprint instead of marathon|
|MLBPA agrees to report to camps on July 1, season to start on July 23 or 24|
|Coronavirus: MLB to impose season schedule after union rejects last offer|
|Coronavirus: MLBPA board reportedly rejects 60-game season proposal|
|Coronavirus: Yankees, Mets will both train in New York if MLB season starts|
|MLB tells players it will not agree to more than 60-game season|
|Coronavirus: Astros player tests positive for COVID-19|
|Coronavirus: Five Phillies players test positive|
|Danger of expanded MLB playoffs is rewarding mediocrity|
|Coronavirus: Players counter MLB´s offer with 70-game proposal|
|Coronavirus: MLB Players Trust commits $1million to support minor leaguers|
|MLB, MLBPA nearing agreement for 2020 season?|
|Coronavirus: MLBPA´s Clark says players ´disgusted´ with MLB commissioner Manfred|
|Astros pitcher Justin Verlander throws off mound|
|Coronavirus: MLBPA rejects latest offer, wants MLB to schedule season|
|Coronavirus: Blue Jays hope to play in Toronto, examining other options|
|Detroit Tigers select 1B Torkelson with top pick in MLB Draft|
|Coronavirus: Manfred says there is ´100 per cent´ chance of MLB season|
|GM: Astros would hold ´spring training´ at home park|
|Pirates pitcher Archer out for 2020 season after surgery|
|Coronavirus: David Price gives $1,000 to Dodgers minor leaguers|
|Coronavirus: MLB´s proposal for more salary cuts a non-starter – Scherzer|
|Coronavirus: Tampa Bay Rays open Tropicana Field for limited workouts|
|Rangers would prefer to hold second spring training at new stadium|
|Coronavirus: Nationals to receive World Series rings in virtual ceremony|
|Coronavirus: Former Astros, Athletics manager Howe in ICU with COVID-19|
|With the DH likely coming to all of MLB, which NL hitters would benefit the most?|
|Cashman: Yankees star Judge set to return at full capacity|
|Coronavirus: Rays star pitcher Snell refuses to play unless he gets full salary|
|Coronavirus: Nationals reliever Doolittle concerned about starting MLB season|
|Coronavirus: MLB to bring restart proposal to players, report says|
|Coronavirus: Less than one per cent of MLB employees test positive for COVID-19 antibodies|
|Coronavirus: MLB reportedly shortens 2020 draft from 40 rounds to five|
|Coronavirus: Stars salute return of baseball in South Korea|
|Red Sox outfielder Verdugo says he´s physically 100 per cent|
|Coronavirus: Rays´ Snell wins ´MLB The Show´ Players League championship|
|Former Athletics and All-Star pitcher Keough dies aged 64|
|No fans for MLB games? It´s happened before|
|Astros´ Verlander makes significant progress following groin surgery|
|Coronavirus: Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony postponed until 2021|
|Orioles star Mancini not expecting to play in 2020 due to colon cancer|
|Red Sox docked draft pick, Cora suspended one year for sign stealing|
|NTSB: MLB Hall of Famer Roy Halladay had drugs in system, doing stunts when plane crashed|
|Coronavirus: Arizona governor says state willing to host all 30 MLB teams in empty ballparks|
|Former MLB manager Jim Frey dies at 88|
|Yankees general partner, co-chairperson Hank Steinbrenner dies aged 63|
|Former All-Star Glenn Beckert dies at 79|
|Reynolds announces retirement after 13 years in MLB|
|Yankees again top Forbes´ annual MLB valuations|
|Who will shine and who will struggle due to delayed MLB schedule?|
|Coronavirus: MLB insists nothing decided amid reports season will start in May|
|MLB Hall of Famer and Detroit Tigers legend Al Kaline dead at 85|