The Phillies announced Tuesday that one additional player and two additional staff members at their Clearwater, Florida training facility have tested positive for COVID-19. One player who is not at the Clearwater complex also tested positive.
This comes on the heels of five Phillies players and three staff members testing positive late last week. The team tested 32 additional people after the initial outbreak, leading to today’s announcement.
Just in case all of this talk about 60-game seasons and schedules and everything has you thinking everything about the 2020 baseball season is sorted.
Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.
The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”
Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.
Now, however, Kopech has opted out.