At least 31 MLB players and seven staff members have tested positive for COVID-19

By Eric Todisco
July 05, 2020 05:30 PM
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While the 60-game 2020 MLB season is scheduled to begin at the end of July, multiple players across the league have tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).

Over the weekend, numerous MLB teams, including the New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves, confirmed with ESPN that a host of players have tested positive for the virus.

In total, at least 31 players and seven staff members have tested positive for COVID-19, a rate of 1.2 percent, Major League Baseball and the players' association announced Friday, according to ESPN.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone confirmed positive test results for infielder DJ LeMahieu and reliever Luis Cessa. Boone said that both players are at home and gave the team permission to release their status. LeMahieu, 31, was asymptomatic while Cessa, 28, had mild symptoms, Boone told the outlet.

RELATED VIDEO: MLB Star Ian Desmond Opts Out of 2020 Season Due to COVID-19 Concerns: 'Home Is Where I Need to Be'

According to the Associated Press, players from the Braves who have tested positive for COVID-19, including All-Star first baseman Freddie Freeman, reliever Will Smith, right-hander Touki Toussaint and infielder Pete Kozma.

From the Minnesota Twins, players who tested positive include: third baseman Miguel Sano, catcher Willians Astudillo, shortstop Nick Gordon and right-handed reliever Edwar Colin, according to CBS Sports.

Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez confirmed he tested positive for the virus during a call with ESPN reporters. Perez said he was asymptomatic and could play baseball today if needed.

Boston Red Sox manager Ron Roenicke confirmed to ESPN that left-handers Josh Taylor and Darwinzon Hernandez tested positive and were isolated from their teammates.

Additional players that have tested positive for COVID-19 include St. Louis Cardinals left-handers Ricardo Sanchez and Genesis Cabrera, Cleveland Indians outfielder Delino DeShields, and San Diego Padres outfielder Tommy Pham.

Four players from the Miami Marlins have tested positive, but their identities have yet to be publicly disclosed.

With over 30 players testing positive for COVID-19, many athletes have decided to opt-out of the 2020 MLB season for health and safety reasons.

On Saturday, Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher David Price announced that he would not be playing in the upcoming season.

"After considerable thought and discussion with my family and the Dodgers, I have decided it is in the best interest of my health and my family's health to not play this season," the 34-year-old wrote on Twitter. "I will miss my teammates and will be cheering for them throughout the season and on to a World Series victory. I'm sorry I won't be playing for you this year, but look forward to representing you next year."

Other players to opt-out include Colorado Rockies outfielder Ian Desmond, free agent Tyson Ross, Atlanta Braves pitcher Felix Hernandez, Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Mike Leake, Washington Nationals first baseman Ryan Zimmerman and pitcher Joe Ross.

The 2020 MLB season is slated to begin later this month and end in September, while the postseason will end by October.

As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, PEOPLE is committed to providing the most recent data in our coverage. Some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, readers are encouraged to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments. To help provide doctors and nurses on the front lines with life-saving medical resources, donate to Direct Relief here.