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Freddie Freeman among four Braves to test positive for COVID-19

Gabriel Burns, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on

Published in Baseball

ATLANTA -- Braves manager Brian Snitker announced Saturday that the team had four players test positive for COVID-19: first baseman Freddie Freeman, left-hander Will Smith, right-hander Touki Toussaint and utilityman Pete Kozma.

Smith and Toussaint are asymptomatic. Freeman and Kozma have fevers, but Kozma is feeling better, according to Snitker.

The players will be placed on the designated COVID-19 injured list. They can return after testing negative twice at least 24 hours apart and after being 72 hours clear of a fever.

"Every day, we're going to have to deal with this for the next three months," Snitker said. "It's going to be a daily thing."

Freeman tested negative on the intake test earlier this week. He developed symptoms afterwards and tested positive on Friday. Snitker said he didn't have any contact with teammates.

"He's running a fever," Snitker said. "Talked to him this morning. He's not feeling great. It'll be a while before we can get him back."

 

The four players are the first known Braves to have tested positive. The team anticipates its next wave of results Saturday evening or Sunday morning.

MLB will not specifically announce a player's placement on the COVID-19 IL due to privacy laws. The Braves players gave their consent to announce their names.

"I applaud Freddie, Will and all those guys for allowing me to say their names out here," Snitker said. "It's a good thing in our industry and shows other players that this is real. This virus is real. It's something we have to be aware of. It's something that's serious if we're going to continue on and play our games."

Saturday's news was the Braves' first dose of the new reality. The virus continues to impact team and individual sports as they attempt to return.

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