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June 30, 2020

With the Major League Baseball season about to start next month, I so respect the decision of some MLB players to opt out for now because of the pandemic: Ryan Zimmerman and Joe Ross of the Washington Nationals, Mike Leake of the Arizona Diamondbacks, and Ian Desmond of the Colorado Rockies.

I was moved when Ian Desmond who is biracial explained that, “…home is where I need to be right now. Home to help. Home to guide. Home to answer my three older boys’ questions about Coronavirus and Civil Rights and life. Home to be their Dad.” And he has another little one on the way.

Ryan Zimmerman and Joe Ross are thinking about their personal health and safety and that of their loved ones.

And just this morning, Louie made his own tough decision not to resume his Masters swim program at the Pasadena Rose Bowl Aquatic Center that finally reopened this week. A dedicated swimmer for the last two years, he took up the sport at the invitation of our neighbor Derek, a competitive swimmer. Louie loved the regular workouts with coaches (he’s a no-pain-no-gain kind of athlete). It kept his weight in check, he loved the camaraderie of his “swim family” and he even competed in a couple of swim meets.

He had set his alarm this morning to be at the pool by 6:55 a.m. -- encouraged by stringent steps the center is taking to ensure swimmers’ safety: temperature checks, masks at entering and exiting, showers before going into the pool, 45-minute swim times, social distancing, including in the pool, and no lollygagging afterwards.

But late-breaking reports of the coronavirus returning with a vengeance in frightening numbers was enough for Louie to realize that while safety measures at the pool have been extremely well thought out, there is no guarantee. He was also thinking that his exposure could put Jacqueline and me at risk.

Sacrifices usually pay off. Hopefully, we will weather this storm and become stronger for it.

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