The Blue Jays are off today after yesterday’s incredibly thrilling opening day victory in New York, so it isn’t a very Good Friday at all!
Elsewhere, Ross Atkins provided injury-related updates for the team, in which he said George Springer could be ready for the team’s “home” opener on April 8, Robbie Ray and Nate Pearson are throwing off of mounds today, and Tom Hatch is throwing again after a brief shutdown.
He also noted that the Blue Jays will be vaccinated when they return to Florida later this month as the state is set to allow anybody over the age of 18 eligible for the shot in a few weeks. Atkins said that he’s “optimistic” that the Blue Jays will be able to reach the 85% threshold of players getting vaccinated that Major League Baseball has established in order to ease their COVID protocols.
Earlier this week, MLB and the Players’ Association sent out a three-page memorandum to players and staff that stated “all players and staff are strongly encouraged to receive one of the approved COVID-19 vaccines when eligible.” If a team has 85% of its players vaccinated, MLB will loosen their COVID restrictions, allowing things like drinking of flights, card games in dressing rooms, gather in indoor spaces such as hotels without masks, take Uber or Lyft to and from games. Players also wouldn’t have to wear a mask while exercising or tell a compliance officer when they leave their hotel.
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Some players have said they don’t want to be vaccinated, but MLB is clearly pushing very hard for it to happen. It’ll make it much, much easier to get through the season without games being postponed if the league can hit that threshold. A full series between the Nationals and Mets has already been wiped just a day into the season.