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Infectious Diseases Newsbeat

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez diagnosed with the flu, not tested for coronavirus

The Yankees won 103 games a season ago, but in some ways their success was overshadowed by the absurd number of injuries they suffered. Unfortunately for the colossus in the Bronx, the run-up to the 2020 season hasn’t brought measurably improved fortunes.

To recap, lefty James Paxton is sidelined until at least May after undergoing back surgery. Tommy John surgery has put right-hander Luis Severino out for all of 2020, and outfielders Giancarlo Stanton (calf) and Aaron Judge (rib) are in doubt for Opening Day. As well, outfielder Aaron Hicks is still out after having Tommy John surgery last October.

Slugging catcher Gary Sanchez has been added the ledger. Over the weekend, it was revealed the Yankees backstop was dealing with back soreness. Then on Tuesday, Sanchez missed his scheduled batting practice due to a fever, according to MLB.com’s Bryan Hoch. The Yankees later announced Sanchez has been diagnosed with the flu and will be away from the team the next few days.

“He’ll be re-evaluated on Friday. He’ll be kind of away from us for the next couple of days. We’ll see where he’s at at that point,” manager Aaron Boone told reporters, including NJ.com’s Brendan Kuty, Tuesday afternoon.

 

 

QLE Posted: March 11, 2020 at 12:23 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: coronavirus, gary sanchez, infectious diseases

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Masks, Fundraisers and Smallpox-Only Teams: How Baseball Has Dealt With Infectious Diseases Before

The pictures show an old-school baseball game, typical in every way save one: Everyone wears a mask. There’s a face mask on the hitter, the bench and the crowd. Underneath their standard equipment, the umpire and catcher have them, too.

This is how the Pasadena Merchants and Standard-Murphys played a game in the Southern California Winter League on January 26, 1919. The influenza epidemic that had started the previous year was spreading, and California was concerned. Pasadena had started requiring residents to wear masks in public; on the first day that the rule went into effect, the city made 60 arrests to show that the new law was for real. So how does a baseball team operate under these regulations? Simple: Just make everyone wear a mask. Per the Los Angeles Times, “even when sliding for bases, the runners managed to keep the cloth over their noses and mouths.”

This was not how most baseball teams addressed the flu. While the MLB season was cut a few weeks short in 1918, that was due less to the outbreak and more to World War I, and it started back on schedule in 1919. But MLB went without any formal protocol about how to handle the outbreak, with no serious talk of canceled games or empty stadiums, and baseball went on, even as the illness came for some of its key figures. (It’s worth saying here that there was no commissioner to issue any formal protocol: Kenesaw Mountain Landis didn’t become the first to hold the gig until a year later, as an answer to the Black Sox scandal.)

Now, a century later, the situation is significantly different. As coronavirus has continued to spread, baseball has started to take precautions. MLB has established an internal task force, with no plans to cancel games as of yet, and has sent recommendations to teams about how to handle the situation. Clubs have begun to institute their own safety measures: Tampa Bay has ditched high-fives for toe taps, Minnesota has banned autographs, and Pittsburgh has sanitized their spring training facility out of an “overabundance of caution”. In Japan, NPB spring training is happening in empty arenas and KBO spring games have been canceled in South Korea. Other sporting events have also been played without fans or postponed entirely as every league looks at how to handle the virus.

A consideration of the past occasions when baseball and disease have had run-ins with one another.

 

QLE Posted: March 10, 2020 at 01:12 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: coronavirus, history, infectious diseases

 

 

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