Texas Rangers Radio Broadcast Booth Hit by COVID-19
The Texas Rangers have learned that two Tier 3 credentialed individuals who have been working games in the home radio booth at Globe Life Field over the last 10 days have tested positive for COVID-19, including Rangers radio broadcaster Matt Hicks.
The team announced the news in an official press release, which also detailed the course of action they have taken in response to the positive tests:
"The Rangers immediately began the protocols that the team has in place for positive COVID tests, and any person who had direct contact with these individuals was sent home and has undergone COVID-19 testing No individuals will be allowed back into the facility without receiving a negative COVID-19 test.
"The two individuals who received positive tests have only been working on the Globe Life Field broadcast level and have had no access to Tier 1 and 2 restricted areas or any other locations at Globe Life Field."
Hick's partner Eric Nadel received a negative test result. Out of an abundance of caution, he decided to opt out of working the three-game series in San Francisco over the weekend. For the safety of local TV and radio broadcasters, the plan around Major League Baseball is for them to call the game from their home stadiums rather than travel with the team due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to the team's press release, Globe Life Field's broadcast level, including all broadcast booths, were thoroughly sanitized and disinfected on Thursday night.
The Rangers regular pre and post-game host Jared Sandler will handle the play-by-play duties for the Giants series and will be joined by former Rangers David Murphy on Friday and Mark McLemore on Saturday and Sunday. The Rangers' radio announcers will be working in separate booths for these games at Globe Life Field.
The continuation of the baseball season is in jeopardy. The outbreak among the Miami Marlins has affected the play of teams they've encountered. The St. Louis Cardinals had two positive tests that postponed Friday night's game against the Milwaukee Brewers.
The true dagger came when ESPN's Jeff Passan reported on Friday that MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred told MLB Players Association executive director Tony Clark that if the sport doesn't do a better job of managing COVID-19, the season could be shut down.
Needless to say, the events that take place over next few days will be crucial in determining how much longer MLB teams will be playing baseball in 2020.