The Cardinals had two pitchers test positive for COVID-19 during their entry exams this week for preseason camp, and the revelation of those tests could further delay other players from reporting to workouts.
Genesis Cabrera and Ricardo Sanchez had positive tests for the active virus, the team announced Saturday. The players had to give consent to be identified.
Both players were placed in isolation and kept from the team.
They are both asymptomatic, manager Mike Shildt said.
Any players who had contact with them, however, will also have to go through a series of exams before being cleared for official workouts. Some of them have pending tests. On Friday, Cabrera was identified as one of the Cardinals who traveled together from the Dominican Republic and up from Miami.
The other members of that group, as mentioned by a Cardinals official, were Carlos Martinez, Elehuris Montero, and Ivan Herrera.
A total of eight players from the Cardinals' 45-man camp roster have not appeared in workouts. That includes the five mentioned above, along with Alex Reyes, Junior Fernandez, and Giovanny Gallegos. Gallegos has remained in Mexico until he can receive clearance to fly.
When asked specifically about Reyes, Shildt said that he was here -- presumably in St. Louis.
He cautioned not to jump to any conclusions.
“Hopefully nobody else is affected by it,” Shildt said. “That’s one of the reasons the protocols are in place for guys to be tested and then quarantined and then re-tested and go through the protocols. They’re obviously affected on a multitude of levels. We’re comfortable that nobody else is affected – just the flow of them being able to get work.”
Part of the entry exam is asking players if they had contact with anyone who tested positive and that means they could have to go through additional testing before joining official workouts.
The two new positive tests are not counted in the number MLB and MLBPA announced Friday from the first week of testing. The Cardinals, as a team, had one previous positive test that counted in that 38. Of that 38, 31 were players, according to MLB.
Keep up with the latest Cardinals coverage from our award-winning team of reporters and columnists.