The Cedar Rapids Kernels will not "play ball" this season, but neither will anyone else in the minor leagues.

Major League Baseball, while trying to recoup some semblance of its own season, said it will not send players to minor league clubs, effectively canceling their season. In a statement, Kernels General Manager Scott Wilson said "we understand it is a decision they did not make lightly. We also understand how disappointed our fans and sponsors, who were looking forward to a terrific year of baseball, must be. Kernels baseball will return in 2021, and we look forward to seeing all our fans next season.”

Although it's not much of a surprise, it is sad news. However, there's also the news that MLB is still negotiating a new agreement with its minor-league system that is likely to drop 40 teams altogether. It's unknown what this means for the Kernels, or fellow Midwest League teams in Quad Cities, Burlington and Clinton.

Kernels CEO Doug Nelson tells the Gazette he's cautiously optimistic the Kernels will be back and affiliated with an MLB team in 2021.

We will miss the crack of the bat and the unmistakable smells of ballpark food this season. The "Home Plate Bash" is still on for a chance to step back inside the ballpark. It's a big fireworks and entertainment show to celebrate the 4th this weekend.

The bummer summer of 2020 continues as the pandemic takes away our baseball in Cedar Rapids. We echo the sentiments of team executives who remain hopeful it will be business as usual in the future. I know I'm committing to attending even more games when they come back.

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