New York Yankees: Yankees exposed to COVID-19 at Roger Dean Stadium?

William Parlee
New York Yankees, New York Mets
Jun 11, 2019; Bronx, NY, USA; New York Mets right fielder Michael Conforto (30) makes a diving attempt to catch an RBI triple by New York Yankees left fielder Brett Gardner (not pictured) during the fifth inning at Yankees Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports

Although remote the Yankees may have had contact with COVID-19!

The New York Yankees could have possibly come in contact with the Coronavirus at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Florida, on Wednesday, March  11th when they met Derek Jeter’s Miami Marlins.  The situation is complicated, and the possibility that any Yankee came in contact with the virus is remote.  However, because we know so little about the virus, contact can not be ruled out.

The story started with the NBA and Rudy Gobert, who tested positive for the virus and caused the shutdown of the NBA.  Since then, a second Utah Jazz player has come down with the virus.  The player is Donovan Mitchell; his father is Donovan Mitchell Sr.  The elder Mitchell is a director of player relations for the New York Mets and was present at Roger Dean Stadium when the Mets met the Marlins just a few days before the Yankees played the Marlins.  The elder Mitchell has not been tested for the virus, but once the Mets found out about the connection they asked him to stay away from the team.

If the Marlins’ facility wasn’t thoroughly cleaned, it’s possible the virus could have been waiting for the Yankees when they arrived on March 11.  So far, as far as we know, no Yankee player or coach has any symptoms of the disease.   The chance of exposure still remote is more likely to involve the Mets.  The Mets released a statement on the situation:

“We have been in regular communication with medical professionals and public health authorities over the past several weeks. When news surfaced last night of the situation involving the Utah Jazz, we immediately contacted Donovan Mitchell Sr. to advise him to not report at our facility this morning.”

The Yankees like the Mets will continue to monitor the situation and the players.  After the Yankees game in Jupiter, they together boarded a bus back to George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, where they remain. They will continue to work out and presumably play simulated games in front of empty stands, as the MLB has canceled the remainder of spring training and the first two weeks of the regular season.  With the spread of the disease continuing, MLB will continue to re-evaluate the situation.  Many in baseball feel due to gathering restrictions in many areas of the country, that baseball will not start again until May at the earliest.