Alex Rodriguez is just one hit away from 3,000

34 Comments

UPDATE: 3,000 hits will likely have to wait until tomorrow. Rodriguez came up second in the bottom of the eighth inning and was walked on four straight inside pitches by Sam Dyson, who clearly didn’t want any part of history. The disappointed fans at Yankee Stadium are letting him hear it.

9:19 p.m. ET: With his first chance at 3,000 hits, Rodriguez just lined out to right field in the bottom of the sixth inning. He could get another at-bat tonight.

8:50 p.m. ET: Rodriguez singled to left field in the bottom of the fifth inning, so he’s now just one hit away from 3,000. He should get at least one more at-bat tonight. Stay tuned.

7:34 p.m. ET: After entering tonight’s game with 2,997 career hits, Alex Rodriguez just drove in Brett Gardner with an RBI single off Mat Latos in the first inning to give the Yankees an early 1-0 lead over the Marlins. He’s now just two hits away from becoming the 29th player in MLB history to reach 3,000 hits.

Including tonight, the Yankees will play their next seven games at Yankee Stadium, so there’s a good chance he’ll reach the milestone at home. We’ll pass along updates as it happens.

Rodriguez’s former teammate, Derek Jeter, was the last player in MLB to reach 3,000 hits. He got there on July 9, 2011.

Report: Some MLB teams using outside labs for COVID-19 testing

MLB COVID-19 testing
Jason Koerner/Getty Images
1 Comment

The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal and Zach Buchanan report that the Diamondbacks are one of several teams that have used labs other than the Sports Medicine Research and Testing Laboratory in Utah to process COVID-19 testing. MLB has encountered delays with its testing, despite promising 24-hour turnaround time, so teams have tried other avenues — with the league’s endorsement — in order to get faster results.

The SMRTL had processed performance-enhancing drug screenings for MLB. The league converted it to process COVID-19 tests amid concerns that having a season and all of the testing that would be required throughout would take away testing resources from the general public. That some teams are utilizing labs other than the SMRTL suggests the league, indeed, is usurping those resources.

In prospect Seth Beer’s case, he tested positive for COVID-19. He needed to test negative twice consecutively to be cleared to return to play. Beer went to a third-party site in the Phoenix area. He received his second negative test and was cleared to return on July 9.

The Diamondbacks said that the labs they have used have assured them that they are not taking away tests from the public. That seems like a claim MLB and the D-Backs should demonstrably prove. Per Rosenthal and Buchahan, the D-Backs have gone to an outside lab about 20 times, which accounts for less than one percent of COVID-19 tests taken by players and staff. Still, those are 20 tests that could have been used by the general public. And if the D-Backs and a handful of other teams already are using outside labs, then the rest of the league likely already is or soon will be doing the same. In the end, there will be a lot more than 20 tests taken at outside labs by MLB players and staff. Considering that “Tier 1” players will be tested every other day throughout the season, the total of third-party tests taken — if things continue the way they are now — could easily reach into the thousands by the end of October.

We all want baseball back, but the players, coaches, and all other staff are no more important than cashiers, teachers, and delivery drivers, so they shouldn’t have more access to COVID-19 testing simply by virtue of being associated with Major League Baseball and all of its influence and financial muscle. It would be unethical for MLB to be cutting in line ahead of other people who need testing just as much as if not more than the players.