Concerns are high regarding a potential MLB All-Star Game COVID-19 outbreak, following the sudden postponement of Thursday’s Red Sox-Yankees game in New York. Right fielder Aaron Judge, who started in Tuesday’s midsummer classic for the American League, is one of three Yankees players currently going through COVID protocols, along with teammates Kyle Higashioka and third baseman Gio Urshela.
Judge, Higashioka and Urshela all saw positive test results prior to Thursday’s postponement, and are awaiting the results of subsequent tests to confirm (or refute) the first pass. With their status up in the air, other All-Star players are likely to be tested and endure at least some level of isolation until they can be ruled out as potentially having contracted the virus themselves. The five members of the Boston Red Sox who also played on the American League side with Judge were kept from one-on-one interviews with the media prior to Thursday’s game being postponed.
Three other Yankees players have been confirmed as COVID-19 positive and placed on the injured list – pitchers Jonathan Loaisiga, Nestor Cortez Jr. and Wandy Peralta. Yankees manager Aaron Boone said he expects the three players awaiting confirmation will also prove out to having the coronavirus.
“We have a couple of them that have had symptoms, but for the most part, they’re doing pretty well,” Boone said. “We’ll just rally around them and give them the support they need and see where this thing goes as the hours unfold.”
Loaisiga tested positive during the pre-ASG series against Houston, and did not travel with the team following that diagnosis. According to the team, all three of the confirmed positive players were fully vaccinated, however not all six of the currently impacted players were vaccinated, though the team had reached the MLB threshhold of 85 percent vaccinations to have relaxed social distancing guidelines in place.
“I still feel that’s a deeply personal decision,” Boone said. “I have people in my life that have made decisions in both ways. Ultimately, I respect that. I’ve chosen to get vaccinated and I’ve encouraged [others] to.”
It is unclear whether or not the Red Sox and Yankees will play Friday’s scheduled game.
The postponement of the rivalry series is the second high-profile COVID postponement this week, following the Foo Fighters’ halting a planned Saturday show at LA’s Forum following a positive test within their organization. While many events have resumed operation at full scale, concerns are high regarding the potential impact of the highly contagious “delta” variant of the coronavirus and hesitancy on the part of some to get vaccinated.