Julio Cortez/Associated Press
A third Major League Baseball club has announced a confirmed case of the coronavirus at their facilities.
One Houston Astros player tested positive for COVID-19 at the team’s West Palm Beach campus in Florida.
The club did not release the name of the player, but it told Chandler Rome of the Houston Chronicle that the case was discovered “several” days ago.
Minute Maid Park in Houston remains open to players for workouts, though no decision on the West Palm Beach facilities has been announced.
Earlier on Friday, the Philadelphia Phillies announced five players and three staff members had tested positive at their Clearwater, Florida facility, while just up the road in Dunedin, the Toronto Blue Jays announced they too were closing their facilities after a player tested positive for the coronavirus.
Joel Sherman of the New York Post reported the recent spate of confirmed cases has led the league to consider closing all 30 camps again for sanitization efforts while it works to create and implement a universal health and safety protocol.
Currently Major League Baseball does not have a uniform policy on testing, leaving teams to develop their own that are independent of each other.
While club owners and the players association continue to engage in a heated bargaining session over the resumption of the season, much of the focus has been on whether or not players will get their full prorated salaries. That has pushed negotiations over coronavirus testing seemingly to the back burner.
In the meantime, some players who are trying to stay in shape for a potential return to play have become ill and forced the league into an even more precarious position as the amount of time to complete even a condensed season decreases.
Shutting down all 30 camps would eat up more time. The lack of a comprehensive health and safety plan may prove the most costly of all.
On Friday, Tim Brown of Yahoo Sports reported the Texas Rangers are suspending workouts and team activities at their Arizona facilities until testing protocols are in place.
The Astros have yet to announce their intentions on keeping operations running at their West Palm Beach offices.