CLEARWATER, Fla — Before Major League Baseball can even finalize its negotiations for a 2020 season, one of its clubs has been afflicted by the coronavirus,
According to a press release from the Philadelphia Phillies, five players and three staff members working at the club's Clearwater, Florida facility have tested positive for COVID-19.
The press release states that the first positive case was confirmed on Tuesday, June 16.
Additionally, 8 staff members have tested negative for the virus, and another 12 staff members and 20 players, consisting of both major and minor league athletes, are in the process of being tested.
Phillies managing partner John Middleton said via the release, "The Phillies are committed to the health and welfare of our players, coaches and staff as our highest priority, and as a result of these confirmed tests, all facilities in Clearwater have been closed indefinitely to all players, coaches and staff and will remain closed until medical authorities are confident that the virus is under control and our facilities are disinfected.
The club declined to comment on how this impacts the team's 2020 season, saying it is too early to know.