LOS ANGELES — Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman said Thursday that members of the organization have tested positive for the coronavirus.
“We have had some people in our organization test positive, none that have resulted in symptoms that have been problematic,” Friedman said.
Friedman didn’t specify whether the positive tests were of players, coaches, or other team employees, and said he wasn’t yet sure if it would affect anyone’s readiness for spring training.
“This is very much a personal thing that for anyone to share, it’s up to them. From my standpoint and [Dave Roberts’] standpoint, we’re not comfortable doing that,” Friedman said. “We want to err on the side of being thoughtful to the people involved.”
The team will begin reporting to spring training on July 1 at Dodger Stadium, and plan to hold their first official workout on Friday, July 3.
We’ll know by Sunday which players will be invited to major league spring training, plus the remainder of the initial 60 players on the club player pool list that will be eligible to play in the majors this season. Before arriving at spring training, all players, coaches, and related staff will have to undergo intake testing before getting cleared to report.
The team is still working with Comprehensive Drug Testing, the company that will administer the intake screenings, which consist of a temperature check, a body fluid sample for diagnostic testing, and a blood sample for antibody testing. Friedman said the tests would be staggered over a few days in advance of reporting, with results usually ready in between 24-48 hours.
The Dodgers are not alone in having positive tests. At least 10 other major league teams have had players or staff test positive for coronavirus, and that’s before formal workouts have even started.
“There’s no question we’re going to have a decent number of positive tests in spring training and the season,” Friedman said. “To me it’s much more about how quick we are to respond to that, the treatment options, the quarantining part of it, making sure it doesn’t spread among the group.
“To the extent that we can contain it, and we have really good health and safety protocols in place, I think it’s something that collectively as a group with everyone working together it’s something we can manage. but anyone that pretends like they can sit here today and tell you exactly how things are going to play out, I don’t subscribe to that. I don’t agree with it. There’s a lot we don’t know. A lot of our conversations internally have been about staying on our toes, staying nimble, trying to communicate our way through everything.”
There is a Covid-19 related injured list this season, with no minimum or maximum length, on which players won’t count against the active nor 40-man rosters. To be activated off that injured list, a player must not have a fever for three days, have two negative tests at least 24 hours apart, complete an antibody test and if necessary a cardiac evaluation, and be cleared by a four-person MLB committee.