HOUSTON (CBS SF) — The Oakland Athletics announced Sunday a member of their organization has tested positive for COVID-19, forcing the postponement of their game with the Houston Astros and enter self-isolation.
The A’s did not identify who had tested positive in their short press release Sunday morning.
“The team conducted testing and contact tracing for the entire traveling party this morning and will self-isolate in Houston with recommended safety precautions in place,” the club said.
Oakland has gotten off to an American League West best 22-12 record in the COVID-19 shortened season. They are 2.5 games ahead of the Astros after being swept in a Saturday doubleheader.
Kyle Tucker hit a bases-clearing triple, George Springer homered to lead Astros to a 6-3 victory in the nightcap. In the opening game, Lance McCullers Jr. pitched six effective innings in Houston’s 4-2 victory. Tucker hit a three-run homer and Josh Reddick also connected.
Tommy La Stella, who was acquired by Oakland in a trade with the Angels on Friday, cut Houston’s lead to 5-3 with a run-scoring groundout in the fifth of the nightcap.
“It wasn’t our best game, I don’t think he had anything to do with that,” Oakland manager Bob Melvin said of La Stella. “It’s a team game. We’ve seen enough of him to know he’s a good hitter and a good player. Just overall we didn’t play a good game today.”
The doubleheader was scheduled after the Athletics and Astros decided not to play Friday night in order to raise awareness of racial inequality in the wake of the police shooting of 29-year-old Jacob Blake in Wisconsin.
The cancellation was a rarity for a western team since the league began play in August.
The shortened 60-game schedule for this season has basically turned baseball’s 30 teams into three separate 10-team leagues for two months. The NL and AL West will only play teams in their region until the playoffs begin. The same is true for the AL and NL Central, as well as the AL and NL East.
Two of those three 10-team groups have seen major scheduling disruptions because of COVID-19. The Miami Marlins had a huge outbreak that affected 21 members of the travelling party and it scrambled the schedule for multiple teams in the East. A smaller outbreak among the St. Louis Cardinals meant several teams in the Central had to adjust.
The West had avoided a similar situation until Sunday despite multiple franchises being located in states that are current coronavirus hotspots. California, Texas and Arizona are all still fighting high caseloads.
It’s a big reason no one dares to get cocky. Vigilance is preached.
“This is a tough virus, man,” Colorado manager Bud Black said. “You don’t know how it’s going to play out. A lot of these positive cases could come from very innocent means. I don’t know. I just know that individually and from a team component we have to do what we’re asked to do.”