The Cubs were among the many teams experiencing delays in COVID-19 testing, as today’s results from this weekend’s batch of tests were late to arrive, writes Steve Greenberg of the Chicago Sun-Times. The delay proved to be brief, and general manager Jed Hoyer told the media this afternoon that all of the team’s tests came back negative. That’s obviously good news for the organization, though they’ll need to continue with caution and Hoyer acknowledged that they’ll likely be faced with positive results at some point.
With that in mind, Hoyer understandably opted not to discuss the possibility of extensions for core players or any trade that might eventually be on the horizon (Twitter link via Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune). “At this point, our focus is on making sure this season is operating effectively,” Hoyer said. The Cubs have a number of potential extension candidates — Javier Baez and Kris Bryant among them — and could very arguably use some rotation help following Jose Quintana’s injury. There are obviously more pressing issues for the Cubs and other teams at the moment as they prioritize health-and-safety protocols in the buildup to this year’s shortened season.
More from the NL Central…
- The designated hitter will be implemented in the National League for at least the 2020 season, but Reds slugger Nicholas Castellanos made clear this week that he hopes to remain in the outfield on a regular basis rather than serve a a primary DH (link via John Fay of the Cincinnati Enquirer). “I don’t want to DH,” Castellanos plainly stated. “…I like being in National League where I get to play defense every day. A goal of mine is to become a better and better defender every year that I play – every game that I play is probably a more appropriate answer.” Castellanos went on to note that he’d of course play wherever skipper David Bell asked him to on a given day, and he spoke optimistically about the Reds’ chances in 2020. At least occasional time at DH seems likely for Castellanos and others, though; the Reds have him, Jesse Winker, Nick Senzel, Shogo Akiyama, Aristides Aquino, Phil Ervin and Scott Schebler all in the mix for outfield reps.
- Brewers infielder Brock Holt tells Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel that like many other players, he’s not particularly comfortable playing in 2020. However, Holt also feels that given his contractual status — he’s on a one-year deal after facing a surprisingly tepid market in free agency this past winter — he has little choice but to suit up if he hopes to continue playing. “If I didn’t play, it would be hard for me to find a job next year,” says Holt, who is making the difficult decision to leave his pregnant wife and child in Texas for three months rather than bring them to Milwaukee. “…If I was in a different situation contractually, it’s definitely something I would have considered with my wife being pregnant.”