Pablo Sandoval responds to Aubrey Huff’s criticism: “Who is Aubrey Huff?”

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Third baseman Pablo Sandoval decided to leave the Giants as a free agent, ultimately signing with the Red Sox on a five-year, $95 million deal in November. Sandoval was beloved in San Francisco, helping the team win three championships over the last five seasons. Despite that, there’s some ongoing bad blood between Sandoval and the Giants.

Bleacher Report’s Scott Miller recently quoted Sandoval as saying the Giants, including GM Brian Sabean, “didn’t respect” his agent. In explaining why he took less money to join the Red Sox, Sandoval said, “It is not about money. It is about how you treat the player.” When asked what he would miss about the Giants, Sandoval said, “Only Bochy.” He then added, “And Hunter Pence. Just those guys.”

Former Giant Aubrey Huff went on Facebook recently, responding to Sandoval. He wrote (via ESPN’s Marly Rivera and Gordon Edes):

“I’m pretty sure their (sic) wasn’t a tear shed on behalf of all the players, and the coaches when he signed with Boston,” Huff’s Facebook post from earlier in the week read. “It has always been about Pablo. He had the fans fooled but not the players! One of the biggest reasons he didn’t want to come back is because the Giants made him workout on the treadmill every day! Pretty sure that was a driving force for him! Never the less [sic] he could have always been a legend in San Fran but ego always will come in to play when it comes to Pablo! Sorry for the rant just want to take up for the players who are there now holding their tongues, because they don’t want to get in the middle of this! If you can’t get along with guys like (Buster) Posey, (Madison) Bumgarner, (Matt) Cain, (Jeremy) Affeldt (sic), just to name a few, then maybe it’s time to look in the mirror! Rant over!”

Sandoval’s response? “Who is Aubrey Huff?” He continued, “What is important here is to see where the person who made those comments is, and where I am now, that’s what counts.” He called Huff’s Facebook post “completely incoherent”.

Sandoval accrued 21.1 Wins Above Replacement (per Baseball Reference) over seven seasons with the Giants,  making the NL All-Star team twice. He frequently drew criticism for his weight, something Huff alluded to in mentioning that the Giants made him run on the treadmill every day. Huff intimates that Sandoval is lazy and selfish. Sandoval responded, saying, “I’m not selfish and I have always worked very hard for my team. Those are things I have proven to my teammates, especially working with young players.”

It will be interesting to see if Huff or anyone else associated with the Giants responds to Sandoval’s latest salvo, or if the issue will dissipate as the regular season draws closer.

MLB and MLBPA announce first set of COVID-19 test results

MLB COVID-19 test results
FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images
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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.