Matt Kemp calls Atlanta “a baseball town”

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As my friends down south say whenever they encounter a misguided person: bless his heart.

Or at least bless his intentions. I’m sure Matt Kemp wants nothing more than to make a great impression in Atlanta and revive a career that, well, got him sent to Atlanta. But Matt: you and I are men of action. Lies do not become us:

Atlanta is a lot of things, but “baseball town” is not something it gets accused of being very often. At least not credibly. I think the knock on Atlanta for not selling out playoff games and things is a bit overstated — the Braves have a ton of fans, they’re just a lot more geographically dispersed than most teams thanks to TBS and their regional, as opposed to merely local appeal — but no one really thinks of Atlanta as a baseball town. College football? Boy howdy. Pro football? Sure. Folks in Atlanta like the Braves well enough, but it ain’t what people think of when they think “baseball town.”

Maybe, though, this isn’t Matt Kemp being misguided. Maybe he’s throwing shade at San Diego or Los Angeles. L.A. would be hard — they draw amazingly well, always — but it could be one of those “L.A. fans arrive late, leave early” things. Which is itself overstated in my experience, but that’s what people say. San Diego people don’t really turn out in droves for the Padres, but it’s not like they’ve been given much to turn out for over the years. Hard to blame them. It gets cold in that park at night.

Wait! I got it! The Braves head to St. Louis to play the Cardinals this weekend! He must be excited about the road trip. You can say what you want about the Cardinals and their fans, but you can’t say St. Louis is not a baseball town.

There. That’s it. Phew.

 

Brewers have 3 positive COVID tests at alternate site

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
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MILWAUKEE — The Brewers had two players and a staff member test positive for the coronavirus at their alternate training site in Appleton, Wisconsin.

Milwaukee president of baseball operations David Stearns confirmed the positive results Saturday and said they shouldn’t impact the major league team. Teams are using alternate training sites this season to keep reserve players sharp because the minor league season was canceled due to the pandemic.

Stearns said the positive tests came Monday and did not name the two players or the staff member. Players must give their permission for their names to be revealed after positive tests.

The entire camp was placed in quarantine.

“We have gone through contact tracing,” Stearns said. “We do not believe it will have any impact at all on our major league team. We’ve been fortunate to get through this season relatively unscathed in this area. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get all the way there at our alternate site.”

Milwaukee entered Saturday one game behind the Reds and Cardinals for second place in the NL Central, with the top two teams qualifying for the postseason.

The Brewers still will be able to take taxi squad players with them on the team’s trip to Cincinnati and St. Louis in the final week of the season. He said those players have had repeated negative tests and the team is “confident” there would be no possible spread of the virus.

“Because of the nature of who these individuals were, it’s really not going to affect the quarantine group at all,” Stearns said. “We’re very fortunate that the group of players who could potentially be on a postseason roster for us aren’t interacting all that much with the individuals that tested positive.”