• Reuters

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The Washington Nationals said on Saturday they have altered plans for a virtual World Series championship ring ceremony amid the COVID-19 pandemic after players expressed a preference to receive the rings in person.

The Nationals, who beat the Houston Astros last October to win their maiden World Series title, will still go ahead with unveiling the design of the ring on Sunday as part of a weekend that includes the release of a documentary about their 2019 season.

“When team leaders discussed the plan this week with the players, the players collectively decided they would prefer to receive their rings when the team could be physically reunited. We support that decision,” the club said in a statement.

The Nationals originally planned to present the rings to players before the team’s the second home game of the season in March, but Major League Baseball delayed the start of the campaign because of the coronavirus.

The May 24 date of the virtual ceremony was selected as it marked a year from when the Nationals took the first step in a stunning turnaround after a 19-31 start to the 2019 campaign, which culminated in a seven-game World Series win over the Astros.

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