Coronavirus: 31 MLB players, 7 staff members test positive

Coronavirus: 31 MLB players, 7 staff members test positive
MLB and the players' union announced that 31 players and seven staff members had tested positive for the coronavirus. (Cindy Danger Jones/Pixabay)

Thirty-one major-league players and seven staff members tested positive for the coronavirus in the first round of testing, MLB and the players’ union said Friday.

The league and the Major League Baseball Players Association, in a joint announcement, revealed the results of the first round of testing, MLB.com reported. The tests were part of the mandatory intake screening process that were conducted before teams began training camps. All 30 teams began training camp Friday at their home ballparks.

MLB said that 19 clubs had at least one player or staff member test positive.

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The 38 positive tests represented 1.2% of 3,185 samples collected, ESPN reported.

MLB will not identify specific players who tested positive, citing the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, ESPN reported. Teams also will not release a COVID-19-specific injured list placement for a player who is removed from the club after testing positive.

“It will be encouraging if we can keep that to that level,‘' Arizona Diamondbacks General Manager Mike Hazen told USA Today. “It’s going to be on all of us to do our best to do that. Just because we get through the quarantine, just because we pass multiple tests doesn’t mean behaviors can go back to normal. It means practicing social distancing, even when we’re at the field, being mindful of where you are in space, wearing a mask all of the time.

“It’s going to be on all of us. What are we doing at night? Going home, and being mindful when we go out to the grocery store and things like that, that we’re still practicing those behaviors. I think that’s what it’s going to require for us to stay safe through the season.‘'

Indians outfielder Delino DeShields Jr. tested positive, according to Chris Antonetti, Cleveland’s president of baseball operations. Brett Martin of the Texas Rangers said he tested positive, USA Today reported.

At a news conference Friday, Boston Red Sox manager Ron Roenicke confirmed that several people in the organization had tested positive, WFXT reported.

“We do have some positive tests,” said Roenicke, who declined to name the players, citing HIPAA regulations.

A member of the Pittsburgh Pirates’ scouting team in Venezuela tested positive, WPXI reported.

According to a GoFundMe fundraiser on the scout’s behalf, the scout was hospitalized because of the virus. The organizer of the fundraiser is not known, with the username being “MLB Scout,” the television station reported.