The MLB world was shaken when it was learned, a couple of weeks ago, that there were positive cases of coronavirus within the Miami Marlins. Lots of words have been written and spoken about the possible causes of the outbreak, but team owner Derek Jeter had an encounter with the media and criticized the ease with which false rumors were spread about the club.
In total, 18 Miami Marlins players tested positive for the virus, and the team will resume its season today after a hiatus lasting more than a week. Jeter acknowledged that some of his players failed to obey MLB’s safety protocols such as wearing masks at all times and social distancing, but anything beyond that, he says, wasn’t true.
“I am hoping that the first question today is about the health of our players who’ve tested positive because it really has been disheartening to not read anything about that or see many signs of empathy for what they’re going through,” the Yankees great and said according to NJ.com. “Instead, we continue to hear and read about rumors about our players actions in Atlanta, and we need to stop that. And our team and our players deserve better than that. These guys are sick.”
Scott Miller of the Bleacher Report said that after playing an exhibition game in Atlanta on July 21, some players partied at a hotel bar.
A failure to follow MLB safety protocols in times of COVID-19
Jeter said that the report is erroneous.
“Our guys were not running all around town after our game in Atlanta,” Jeter stated. “So I need to ask that that stop. They don’t deserve that. We did have a couple individuals leave the hotel. In our review, it was determined we had guys leave to get coffee, to get clothes. A guy left to have dinner at a teammate’s house. There were no other guests on site. There was no salacious activity. There was no hanging out at bars. No clubs. No running around the town.
“What it boiled down to on this particular trip guys were around each other, they got relaxed and they let their guard down. They were getting together in groups. They weren’t wearing masks as much. They weren’t social distancing.
“Everyone was getting tested, we went the whole spring training 2.0 without a positive and the entire traveling party got a little too comfortable. Should they have been doing that? No. And that’s been addressed, but there is no way to identify how this got into our clubhouse. And activities on Tuesday night (in Atlanta) were not it.”
Jeter also explained that “the entire traveling party is responsible for not following the MLB protocols as instructed. That includes coaches, staffs and players. Everyone has seen the impact. They’ve seen their teammates get sick, and I know we all have a new level of appreciation.
“Hopefully, this has been a wake-up call for everyone, not only on our team, but the rest of baseball and sports in general.”