MLB Trade Rumors
After multiple members of the Texas Rangers organization tested positive for COVID-19, some employees told ESPN that they “fear for their health and hope the organization will allow employees to work from home after feeling pressure to come into the office,” per ESPN’s Jeff Passan. That’s a troubling revelation coming out of Texas, and a reminder of the power that employers yield over their workers during this difficult time. The Rangers, of course, will have the opportunity to reassess their work-from-home policies in light of these positive tests – and hopefully do so. Given unemployment rates around the country, those with highly-coveted positions within sports franchises are in a difficult position should they disagree with their employers in terms of readiness to return to work. None of the Rangers’ positive tests belonged to players, coaches, or baseball personnel, per Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Teams generally face less public scrutiny with how they handle non-baseball-personnel staff, so let’s see how a couple other teams are handling confirmed positive tests…
- The Milwaukee Brewers are newly among those clubs with positive COVID-19 tests within the organization, writes Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel. Many of those who tested positive were asymptomatic, but apparently not all of them. It’s unclear at this time if those positive tests were from staff members or players. Regardless, the Brewers are forging ahead, set to bring a group of 45 players to compete for the eventual 30-man regular-season roster. The rest of the 60-man roster will train at the team’s Class A facility in Appleton, Wisconsin. Players will face intake testing for COVID-19 as they arrive at team facilities.
- The Cleveland Indians have had players test positive from their homes, the team facility in Arizona, and from the Dominican Republic, per The Athletic’s Zack Meisel. Team President Chris Antonetti says that the cases have been isolated and there have not been any large-scale breakouts. Interestingly, some staff members have decided to sit out the season, though no players within the organization have as of yet decided to abstain from play. Clearly, the concerns are real across the league, and it’s up to teams to work with their staff and players to make sure everyone feels safe heading into this truncated season. The players face the most visibility, but there are obviously many more employees from every team who will face increased risk in the coming months now that baseball is coming back.