After a positive COVID-19 test within the Giants organization forced the immediate postponements of games against the Padres on Friday and Saturday, Major League Baseball has yet to make a determination as to whether the teams will return to the field Sunday.
The test result that led to the postponement of games in the middle of the series could be a false positive as USA Today reported a Giants player who tested positive Friday has subsequently tested negative on Saturday. The Giants did not reveal the identity of the player who initially tested positive.
No other member of the Giants traveling party has tested positive for the novel coronavirus in San Diego and the organization has not had any other positive test results since the initial intake process at the beginning of summer camp in July.
“The San Francisco Giants learned last night that a member of the organization has tested positive for COVID-19 and have instructed the team’s players and staff to self-isolate in their San Diego hotel rooms with recommended safety precautions in place,” the Giants said in an official statement Saturday. “The team conducted contact tracing and is continuing testing of the entire traveling party.”
If the teams are cleared to return to the field, it’s possible a Sunday doubleheader at Petco Park would allow the Giants and Padres to avoid a nightmare scenario of playing multiple doubleheaders during the final weekend of the regular season when the teams are scheduled to play a three-game series at Oracle Park in San Francisco.
After postponements wiped out games on Friday and Saturday between the Giants and Padres, MLB has not announced when the clubs will attempt to make up the missed games. The clubs could play doubleheaders at Oracle Park during the final weekend of the regular season, but the league could also explore the possibility of using T-Mobile Park in Seattle to host a game or two between the teams on Thursday, September 17.
The Giants are scheduled to fly back to the Bay Area following Wednesday’s game against the Seattle Mariners, but San Francisco and San Diego have a mutual off day on Thursday before the Padres begin a three-game series in Seattle on Friday.
The Giants and Padres were moments away from first pitch on Friday evening at Petco Park when Giants trainer Dave Groeschner emerged from the dugout and informed the umpire crew of a positive test. Giants manager Gabe Kapler and general manager Scott Harris began informing players the game would be postponed, but no official announcement was made regarding the status of the game until 10 minutes after the scheduled 6:10 first pitch.
Two other National League playoff contenders, the St. Louis Cardinals and Miami Marlins, dealt with COVID-19 outbreaks earlier this season and are now scrambling to play as many games as possible during the final two weeks of the regular season.
The Marlins have not had an off day since September 3 and will play three doubleheaders over the final two weeks of the regular season to complete 60 games. The Cardinals have three doubleheaders scheduled over the next seven days and four before the end of the regular season, but are only set to play 58 games instead of 60 after missing more than two full weeks of games following a coronavirus outbreak.