sunny.png
Friday December 3rd, 2021 8:32AM

COVID outbreak hits Nationals; 3-game series vs. Mets off

By The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The entire season-opening three-game series between the Washington Nationals and New York Mets was called off on Friday because of a COVID-19 outbreak on the 2019 World Series champions, who had four players test positive and another five quarantining after contact tracing.

The Nationals announced the postponement of games scheduled for Saturday and Sunday at their stadium. That news came a day after Thursday night's opener was scratched just hours before it was supposed to begin with Max Scherzer pitching for the Nationals against Jacob deGrom of the Mets in a matchup between the recipients of a combined five Cy Young Awards.

“We’re in crisis management mode,” Washington general manager Mike Rizzo said in a video call with reporters Friday.

More than a third of the 26-man roster submitted for opening day is affected by the outbreak and wouldn't be able to play at this point. Rizzo said players who didn't make the team will get called up from the Nationals' training site in Fredericksburg, Virginia.

“Our depth is going to have to shine,” the GM said.

A total of four players have tested positive for the illness caused by the novel coronavirus — including one Rizzo said Thursday was considered merely a “likely positive” — and another five are under quarantine after contact tracing determined they potentially could have been exposed, too. A staff member is also in quarantine.

Rizzo has not identified any of the players involved — and said he will not.

The Nationals did not report a single positive COVID-19 test throughout their six-week spring training camp that ended at the start of this week. The team flew from Florida to Washington on Monday; the first positive of the current outbreak came from testing that day.

“A virus is a virus. It’s very contagious. So I think it could happen in many, many different ways. I don’t think it’s a breach of protocol or inadequate protocols,” Rizzo said. "But it’s something that happened. We’re going to try to find out how it happened and investigate it and see if we can stop it from happening again.”

Major League Baseball and the players' union issued a testing update Friday, saying there were four new positive tests — three players and one staff member — from the 14,354 tests administered over the past week across all of the sport, a 0.03% rate.

One of Washington's players had a fever, according to Rizzo, but others involved were not showing symptoms.

“The player with the fever is doing fine. He’s feeling much better. Close to normal,” he said. “And the other players feel fine.”

Washington's next scheduled game would be Monday at Nationals Park against the NL East rival Atlanta Braves, and Rizzo said he expects Scherzer to start.

“We are planning to play Monday,” Rizzo said. “That's our plan. Although this is a day-by-day thing.”

He wants the players who aren't being isolated to be able to work out at Nationals Park before competing, perhaps as soon as Saturday, if MLB allows.

“You can’t just go from a dead stop in this postponement to ramping up to play the Atlanta Braves and not expect (there) to be injuries," Rizzo said.

“But these other players, it’s just hard to have them sitting and playing video games or whatever for two or three days and then to ramp up again. To me, it’s a safety issue and we’ve got to get these guys’ blood flowing," he said. "We’ve got to get them moving around so they don’t go into the season going from zero to 100 miles an hour without preparation for the last couple of days.”

___

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Baseball , AP National News, AP Online National News, Top General short headlines, AP Online - Georgia News, AP Sports - Major League Baseball
© Copyright 2021 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
COVID outbreak hits Nationals; 3-game series vs. Mets off
The Washington Nationals say their season-opening three-game series against the New York Mets has been postponed after the 2019 World Series champions had a coronavirus outbreak
1:42PM ( 9 minutes ago )
Fully vaccinated people can travel safely again, CDC says
Add travel to the activities vaccinated Americans can safely enjoy again
1:35PM ( 17 minutes ago )
US Capitol on lockdown after report of gunfire nearby
Police have locked down the U.S. Capitol after a report of gunshots in the area
1:21PM ( 31 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
3-game Mets-Nationals series off after positive COVID tests
The Washington Nationals say their season-opening three-game series against the New York Mets has been postponed because of coronavirus concerns
12:51PM ( 1 hour ago )
Kansas gives Bill Self contract to keep him until retirement
Kansas basketball coach Bill Self has agreed to a new contract that will keep him with the Jayhawks until he retires
12:20PM ( 1 hour ago )
Tar Heels turn attention to hiring Williams' successor
North Carolina now faces the challenge of finding Roy Williams’ successor
10:29AM ( 3 hours ago )
AP Sports
Opening Day: Snow, stars, fans and a virus postponement
Opening day in Major League Baseball saw All-Stars on the field and fans back in the stands
12:15AM ( 13 hours ago )
What cold? Frigid temps can't stop joy as fans return to MLB
Even in the freezing cold, it was hard to dim the joy for fans across Major League Baseball
11:53PM ( 13 hours ago )
Astros' Correa planning for free agency, no hard feelings
Astros shortstop Carlos Correa says he hasn’t seriously discussed a long-term deal with Houston and plans to seek a big payday in free agency next offseason
10:38PM ( 15 hours ago )
AP Online Baseball
Cabrera homers off Bieber in snow, Tigers beat Indians 3-2
Miguel Cabrera homered through the snow in his first at-bat of the season, then added a sparkling play at first base to lift the Detroit Tigers to a 3-2 victory over the Cleveland Indians
4:22PM ( 21 hours ago )
The Latest: US approves 2 more coronavirus home tests
U.S. health officials have authorized two more over-the-counter coronavirus tests used at home to get quick results
3:01PM ( 22 hours ago )
Quick flurry: Cabrera 1st HR of MLB season in snowy Detroit
Miguel Cabrera has hit the first home run of the new Major League Baseball season, a drive through the snow in Detroit’s chilly opener against Cleveland
2:02PM ( 23 hours ago )
AP Sports - Major League Baseball
Fully vaccinated people can travel safely again, CDC says
Add travel to the activities vaccinated Americans can safely enjoy again
1:35PM ( 17 minutes ago )
US Capitol on lockdown after report of gunfire nearby
Police have locked down the U.S. Capitol after a report of gunshots in the area
1:21PM ( 31 minutes ago )
Amid glow open day, cloud looms over MLB All-Star Game
Amid the glow of baseball’s opening day, there's a cloud looming over the All-Star Game still more than three months away
1:20PM ( 31 minutes ago )
Alabama expanding vaccine eligibility to 16 and up on Monday
Alabama will expand vaccine eligibility to everyone 16 and older next week
1:13PM ( 38 minutes ago )
Lieutenant: Kneeling on Floyd's neck 'totally unnecessary'
The head of the Minneapolis Police Department's homicide division has testified that kneeling on the neck of someone who is handcuffed and in the prone position is “top-tier, deadly” force and “totally unnecessary.”
1:02PM ( 49 minutes ago )