Cleveland manager Terry Francona announced Sunday that two of his team’s biggest stars are out indefinitely after violating Major League Baseball’s COVID-19 protocols.
All-Star third baseman Jose Ramirez and slugger Franmil Reyes have been quarantined after Reyes received a haircut Friday and the pair dined indoors later that night, Francona told reporters Sunday from the team’s spring training site in Goodyear, Arizona.
“We spoke to both of them. They were both upfront and honest with us about what happened,” Francona said, according to USA Today. “Franmil, kind of a repeat offender. We’re not trying to put guys in the penalty box. We try to talk to guys almost every day, ‘Hey, this is gonna happen if — it doesn’t matter if you agree with it or not. These are the protocols that are in place and you have to live by it.’”
Reyes and Cleveland pitchers Mike Clevinger and Zach Plesac also had to spend time away from the team during the COVID-shortened 2020 season for violating league protocols.
“I get it. I do get it. … Everybody wants to get rid of your mask and it’d be nice to go sit in a restaurant. Those aren’t the conditions we’re playing under,” Francona said. “I also know those guys are young and it’s not normal to be cooped up.
“It doesn’t have to just be baseball. It’s everybody. It’s life. But these are the rules we’re playing under and the more we follow them, the better chance it gives us to be a complete baseball team. Because right now, we’ve lost a couple guys for two, three, four days. That doesn’t help.”
Ramirez finished second in the American League in MVP balloting last season, the third time in four years he has finished in the top-3 in the voting.
Reyes belted 37 home runs for San Diego and Cleveland in 2019, before adding nine in 211 at-bats last season. Cubs reliever Pedro Strop also is being kept away from his team after Reyes posted a since-deleted tweet showing them out in public together recently in Arizona.