So the headline on this story is indulging in a wee bit of hyperbole. Valley Fever, an illness caused by the fungus coccidioidomycosis, isn’t quite ravaging the ranks of Major League Baseball yet (only two players have come down with it), but there is always the possibility that one day it can.
Valley Fever is caused when people breathe in the spores of this fungus which thrives in hot, dry areas like the areas in Arizona where many MLB teams have spring training camps. And there’s been a real uptick in cases recently. On the surface it would seem that climate change would be the most obvious reason behind it’s uptick, but some experts think a more likely cause is the Sun Belt’s economic growth. As populations grow and development and building increase, so too does disruption to the ecosystem. ~AR