NY Sports Day
Joe McDonald

McDonald: No Cano? No Brach? Just The New Normal At Citi Field

In these uncertain times, you can’t blame the Mets for protecting their players’ privacy.

So we won’t know, unless the player comes out and says it himself, if he tested positive for COVID-19. Instead you just won’t see him around for a few days and left to wonder.

This is the case with Brad Brach, who hasn’t come to camp and this is the case with Robinson Cano, who hasn’t been around for the last four days.

“It’s important to remember, and I ask all of you to do the same, that we’re adapting, adapting to a new world in which we live and anew world in which we work,” general manager Brodie Van Wagenen said in a Zoom call. “That’s true for players, coaches, staff, even you members of the media. In doing so, we’re needing to find new ways to communicate and new ways to operate, both inside the bubble and outside the bubble.

“As it relates to player communication and daily updates, you can count on us to continue to provide daily updates on all players and their on-field activities, all players on any health-related issue from an on-field activity, but once players leave the ballpark, we’re not going to provide updates there. There’s a variety of reasons why players are or aren’t here on a given day and we’re going to protect the players’ rights to keep those reasons quiet.”

So it’s going to be interesting as we go along. There will be days some guys won’t be around and we are not going to know why. Right now, during camp, it doesn’t matter as much, but during the season, well that’s going to be different.

Sure, the Mets – or any other club – will put a positive test player on the injured list, just so they can get another player up from the pool, but will that be reported as COVID or will it undisclosed.

It makes you yearn for the good old days where a tweaked hamstring was day-to-day, until they get put on the IL and then lost for two months. At least we knew what was ailing everyone.

And even if COVID doesn’t pop up, there is still a chance of a player or two opting out from this season. It’s happened throughout the league already with Buster Posey being the latest player to take his ball and go home.

All of this is during a training camp when the players are in one place and one city. What’s going to happen when the teams start moving around and the threat of exposure becomes greater?

“We haven’t had any players express the potential of opting out,” Van Wagenen said, we will say what happens as July becomes August and there are a few positive tests. More importantly you have to wonder what happens if a player is on a losing team? Will it make opting out an easier decision? It’s something you may see as the season goes along.

Right now, we don’t know why Cano and Brach are not with the Mets. It could be something non-COVID related. Then again, it may not be.

It’s something we may never know.   

 

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