He’s not officially retired, but Jose Molina is 39 years old, was released by the Rays, and is sidelined following knee surgery. And now he’s joined the Cardinals as a special guest instructor for spring training.
Molina’s younger brother, Yadier Molina, is the Cardinals’ starting catcher and Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post Dispatch reports that the team is hoping Jose has a good enough experience this spring that he’s willing to take on a full-time role coaching catching throughout the organization.
Molina was always terrible offensively, hitting .233 with a .608 OPS for his career, but he stuck around in the majors for 15 seasons, earned $15 million, and played on a lot of good teams because he excelled defensively and was particularly great at framing pitches.
On Friday evening, Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association announced the first set of results for COVID-19 testing as part of the mandatory intake screening process under MLB’s COVID-19 Health Monitoring & Testing Plan. Per Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, the Athletics are not part of this data because their testing has not yet been completed.
There were 38 positive tests, accounting for 1.2% of the 3,185 samples collected and tested. 31 of the 38 individuals who tested positive are players. 19 different teams had one or more individuals test positive.
Sports Illustrated’s Emma Baccellieri notes that the positive test rate in the U.S. nationally is 8.3 percent. The NBA’s positive test rate was 7.1 percent. MLB’s positive test rate is well below average. This doesn’t necessarily mean that anything is wrong with MLB’s testing or that it’s an atypical round of testing. Rather, MLB’s testing population may more closely represent the U.S. population as a whole. Currently, because testing is still somewhat limited, those who have taken tests have tended to be those exhibiting symptoms or those who have been around others who have tested positive. If every single person in the U.S. took a test, the positive test rate would likely come in at a much lower number.
Several players who tested positive have given their consent for their identities to be made known. Those are: Delino DeShields (link), Brett Martin (link), Edward Colina, Nick Gordon, and Willians Astudillo (link). Additionally, Red Sox lefty Eduardo Rodríguez has not shown up to Red Sox camp yet because he has been around someone who tested positive, per The Athletic’s Jen McCaffrey.