CHICAGO -- The reality of the challenges for the upcoming season hit home Sunday for the Chicago White Sox, who announced two players tested positive for COVID-19.
The Sox did not disclose the names and said in a news release that the players requested privacy at this time.
Both players are asymptomatic and have been isolated in Chicago, the team said.
"I just wish for both of those guys a good and fast recovery," first baseman Jose Abreu said through an interpreter during a conference call. "We're going to be here waiting for them. We support them."
The Sox medical staff is monitoring the players, and follow-up testing will take place in the coming days. The players can return after they have recorded consecutive negative tests and passed COVID-19 protocols.
"The health of our players and staff is our top priority, and the White Sox are adhering to all MLB health and safety protocols," the team said in a statement.
The positive tests were identified during the intake process. The players were never inside the facility for any activities, the Sox said.
Abreu said he didn't know which players tested positive and hadn't heard the news until during the conference call.
"I don't think any of (the other players) are aware of who it is or when it happened, other than you know the testing is done," Sox manager Rick Renteria said. "It obviously works. They were identified and the appropriate measures are being taken to continue to monitor and make sure they are, first of all, feeling healthy and clear of any effects of it. And then they will continue to be tested until they are negative and able to come back to us.
"It was more in the pre-entry, so everything that was supposed to be done before guys got here was done. The testing is working."