The corona virus forced baseball's 17th move within 10 days of Saturday, causing at least two other players to sign out and raise doubts that the league could end a shortened 2020 season.
A Cardinals-Brewers game in Milwaukee was postponed for the second day in a row after another player and several St. Louis employees tested positive for the corona virus in rapid trials, said Major League Baseball. The total number of positive employees was three, the associate press said. According to the MLB, the results of the saliva tests will not be available until later Saturday.
Milwaukee then announced that Gold Glove Center fielder Lorenzo Cain will not participate in the rest of the 2020 season.
The Miami Marlins haven't had any new positive results in their last round of coronavirus testing, MLB said, but second baseman Isan Díaz has also decided against it.
The Philadelphia Phillies, meanwhile, were allowed to enter Citizens Bank Park for staggered training sessions starting in the afternoon.
According to the MLB, no Phillies players tested positive for COVID-19 in the past week, and while three employees tested positive, two seemed to be due to false positives, and the third, based on the time of the positive test, did may not have contracted COVID-19 from the Marlins.
MLB has postponed this week's postponed Phillies Yankees games for the next week, Monday and Tuesday in New York and Wednesday and Thursday in Philadelphia. New York's game in Tampa Bay on Thursday was postponed as part of a double header on August 8.
"The virus has taught us that this is a situation where we live day in, day out, week in, week out," said Aaron Boone, manager of Yankees.
Miami will play a four-game series in Baltimore from Tuesday through Thursday, with one game being a double header. The Marlins will be the home team for two games.
MLB said it will postpone the missed Yankees Orioles game and the Marlins Phillies series.
The persons with knowledge of the situation of the Cardinals and Marlins spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity, since the tests had not been published publicly.
Two Cardinals players were marked on Friday for positive testing, which meant the start in Milwaukee had to be canceled. The teams had hoped to resume the game on Saturday and make up for it on Friday as part of a double header Sunday.
St. Louis learned of its first two positive tests on Thursday night from samples taken on Wednesday before a game in Minnesota. Players and staff were instructed to isolate themselves in their hotel rooms, and the club said it did quick tests and contact tracking.
The Cardinals have not been to Miller Park since their arrival in Milwaukee, and the Brewers have not reported positive testing among their players since the start of the season. Nevertheless, Cain, a two-time all-star, informed management that he no longer wanted to participate.
"We fully support Lorenzo's decision and will miss his field talents and leadership skills in the clubhouse," said David Stearns, general manager of Brewers, in a statement.
At least 21 members of the Marlins travel group had an outbreak at the start of a season opening trip. The team has not played in Philadelphia since Sunday, but hopes to resume play next week.
Díaz tested consistently negative throughout the interrupted season, but decided to become the first player in Miami to sign out. He played in two of the Marlins' three games before their season was interrupted.
"It has been a difficult week infecting so many of my teammates with this virus and seeing how quickly it spreads," Díaz wrote on Instagram. "After much thought and thought, I made the difficult decision to sign out for the rest of the 2020 season."
Díaz fought .173 as a rookie last year, but the organization has high hopes for its potential.
The infected Marlins players and staff left Philadelphia on Friday in sleeper buses to Miami, where they will remain in quarantine. The rest of the team remained isolated in a Philadelphia hotel.
With six teams idle from the pandemic on Friday, Commissioner Rob Manfred spoke to union leader Tony Clark about the importance of players who follow the sport's coronavirus protocols.
Manfred and Clark talked about what needs to be done to end the season, said a person familiar with the conversation. The person spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the situation.
The conversation between Manfred and Clark, first reported by ESPN, is taking place amid growing evidence that the spread of the infection threatens to outstrip efforts to play ball.
"Some things aren't looking too good right now, but we have to play to this point. The players see what can happen," said Houston manager Dusty Baker.
The Phillies Blue Jays series in Philadelphia was one of two weekend series that had previously been canceled. The Marlins had a virus outbreak in Philadelphia, and both Miami and the Phillies have been out for at least a week.
Players and Cleveland staff talked about postponing the game in Minnesota on Friday night, but continued to play. The Cardinals had played on Target Field on Wednesday, one day before the Indians' arrival.
His reported from New York, Wine from Miami. AP sports journalist Steve Megargee from Milwaukee contributed to this.
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