Nevin’s status was announced ahead of Tuesday night’s road game against the Tampa Bay Rays. Boone confirmed Willits ‘positive case and that of a staff member after the Yankees’ 3-1 win. Boone also said the team expected more results.
Two more cases are considered inconclusive but should be deemed positive, a source told ESPN, which would bring the number of coaches and support staff who are positive to five. ESPN earlier reported that there were five positive cases among the coaching staff.
“We are doing everything we can to stay healthy. A little backbone staff but nothing we can’t handle, ”Boone said ahead of Tuesday’s game.
The team said in a statement that Nevin was fully vaccinated and under a quarantine protocol in Tampa, Florida.
“He’s fine,” Boone said.
Contact tracing is ongoing, but no players are involved, according to Boone. Bench coach Carlos Mendoza replaced Nevin as third base coach, and minor league coordinator Mario Garza replaced first base coach for Willits. Pitching coach Matt Blake was visible in the paddock area as starting pitcher Jordan Montgomery warmed up before the game.
“Hopefully the fact that we are vaccinated in a fairly large mass… will blunt that and allow a number of us to get nothing and keep the symptoms to a minimum if this passes,” Boone said.
On April 30, the Yankees were able to relax MLB protocols after reaching an 85% vaccination rate among players and staff such as managers, coaches and athletic coaches. The team spoke to MLB officials about the situation.
“We’re definitely going to have to assess and make sure we’re doing whatever we can to prevent things from happening,” Boone said.
Yankees ace Gerrit Cole resumed wearing a mask during a video conference before the game on Tuesday.
“Overall, we’re going to continue,” Cole said. “I don’t think this will be over for a few years. I think we’re going to have to deal with this stuff for a while. And whenever these things come up, we’re going to have to adapt and learn, just like a species. “
Cole said players were comfortable playing the game.
“We’ve all learned that playing through a pandemic in the last year, nothing surprises you, but it catches you a bit off guard,” Boone said. “Playing the 2020 season, going through spring training, playing this year and not having a problem, it always hits you, it always stops you in your tracks. Without a doubt, we are certainly better equipped to deal with it. “
The Associated Press contributed to this report.