Yankees third base coach Phil Nevin has tested positive for COVID-19, the team announced Tuesday evening.
Nevin, who is fully vaccinated and considered a breakthrough COVID case, is currently under quarantine protocol in Tampa. Additional testing and contact tracing is still ongoing, the Yankees said.
Yankees manager Aaron Boone told reporters via Zoom that he still expected Tuesday night’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays to be played.
“He’s doing alright,” Boone said of Nevin. “He’s quarantining right now, but he’s doing OK.
“…Even though we’ve all learned that playing through a pandemic, going back to last year, I guess nothing really surprises you — but still it does catch you off guard a little bit when you do get that news. I don’t think we’ve had a case since before the start of last year, so it definitely hits you, especially as we’ve moved through in this vaccination phase.”
Carlos Mendoza, who is typically the Yankees’ bench coach, will go to third for Tuesday, while Mario Garza replaces Reggie Willits at first base.
Even with all this going on, as long as the Yankees still play Tuesday night, Boone says the team will be ready.
“A little bit of a skeleton staff,” Boone said on some missing guys in the clubhouse. “But nothing we can’t handle.”
Gerrit Cole, who said he’s been “tag-teaming” union player rep duties with Zack Britton while Britton’s been away from the team, also spoke on Tuesday.
Cole said that the Yankees players have spoken as a group about the situation, and, as a whole, the Yankees feel comfortable pressing through and playing Tuesday’s game as scheduled.
“We spoke together as a group of players to see what we’re all feeling, how we’re all dealing with this, what can we do to protect ourselves, kind of just lay out the land for the next few days,” Cole explained. “We’ve been in contact with both sides, again with the joint committee in terms of what we can legally do and what we’re comfortable with and what the doctors are saying about our environment. That’s really about all we can do.
“I think as a whole we’re looking to press on. Again, different levels of comfortability across the club. So, we’re just trying to accommodate that and stick together as a group and make sure everybody is in a good spot to perform tonight, and I think we felt confident as a group that we could do that.”