Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that the Rays will open Tropicana Field to players on the 40-man roster for light workouts beginning on Monday. Players will only be allowed to play catch, run, do cardio, and do light weight work. They will not be allowed to throw off mounds, hit in the cages, or use the clubhouse and weight room.
Major League Baseball was suspended in mid-March due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Monday will mark the Rays’ first team-sanctioned gathering since then. As Topkin notes, players will still be limited to small groups and have to adhere to social distancing protocol.
Florida is among the states gearing up for the return of professional sports. California, New York, and Texas recently gave the all-clear. Florida governor Ron DeSantis said on Monday that “getting sports back online is important for our nation’s mojo.”
On Tuesday, the Marlins opened opened their spring training facility in Jupiter for limited workouts. We’ll likely see more and more sites open up in the coming weeks.
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.”