SAN DIEGO (KGTV) -- The San Diego Padres played Wednesday's double-header as scheduled in Colorado, despite two players testing positive for COVID-19 and three others prohibited to play due to possible exposure to the virus.
Star shortstop Fernando Tatis, Jr. and outfielder Wil Myers will be out for at least 10 days with the virus, though the team says neither player is showing symptoms. Jurickson Profar, Jorge Mateo, and Eric Hosmer are all currently unavailable because of contact tracing protocols.
According to longtime national baseball writer Scott Miller, Major League Baseball uses technology to aid with contact tracing.
Miller said, "Players are all wearing a special band this year. That’s where the contact tracing comes from. Baseball feels with this technology, this helps them isolate.”
While other teams have had games postponed after positive cases, MLB apparently felt it was safe for the Padres to proceed with the team's schedule.
The Padres situation brings to the forefront MLB's effort to convince players to get the COVID-19 vaccine. As an incentive, the COVID safety protocols are relaxed once 85% of a team's uniformed personnel are fully vaccinated. This includes no more mask mandate in the dugout, allowing players to have family in the hotel with them on the road, and the ability to leave the hotel to eat out. While the Padres say the majority of the team is vaccinated, they are still short of the 85% metric.
“You can’t force individuals to get vaccinated," Miller said. "It’s certainly a personal choice. But baseball is using that 85% threshold to try to induce its labor force to get vaccinated.”
The Padres have called several players up from the minor leagues to fill the holes on their roster.