I will be honest. I have taken coronavirus extremely seriously and have been self-isolating since the spring. We are in a horrendous pandemic that has killed a whopping 1, 251, 797 people worldwide including 242, 339 Americans. I am amazed at what happened on the final night of the Major League Baseball season.
We all know the story now about Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner. He was removed from game six of the World Series on October 27 in the eighth inning when it was officially determined that he tested positive for coronavirus. Once the game concluded and the presentations were made, Turner came on to the field without a mask to celebrate with his teammates.
So why was there not a lengthy suspension? According to Ronald Blum of the Associated Press on Friday, three reasons were given. First, the Dodgers players encouraged him to come on to the field. Second, two Dodgers employees did not say anything to Turner as he reentered the field. Third, Turner was reportedly incorrectly told that other Dodgers players had tested positive for coronavirus.
Ok. So who now pays the price for the ridiculousness that transpired during the Dodgers World Series celebration almost two weeks ago? Turner and his Dodgers were to be role models. Not just for baseball fans, but all fans who were watching the World Series.
In his excellent column on October 28, Ryan Fagan of The Sporting News argues that “Turner should have been physically stopped from coming on to the field”, and “he should have been physically removed from the field once he got out there.” Who among Major League Baseball employees are to blame? Will any of them be suspended or disciplined if Turner is not?
Fagan also argues that the Dodgers organization should not be given “a free pass, either.” A loss of draft picks in the 2021 Major League Baseball Draft should be sufficient. The Las Vegas Raiders lost draft picks this past week for coronavirus violations in the National Football League. Major League Baseball should follow the NFL’s lead and throw the book at LA.
We know that Turner will not be disciplined for the chaos that unfolded. Let’s just hope MLB has not ended their investigation. If Major League Baseball decides not to discipline anyone, who is responsible for disciplining Major League Baseball? That question needs to be answered.