Joe Maddon talks coronavirus, state of Angels


ANAHEIM — Angels manager Joe Maddon held a conference call with the media on Wednesday, and he said that no players in the organization have exhibited any signs of COVID-19 and that no workouts of any kind are being held at the club’s Spring Training complex in Tempe, Ariz.

Angels players met with NBA legend Charles Barkley on March 2, and he was tested for the coronavirus last week but hasn’t shared the results. But considering it’s been more than 14 days since Barkley visited the clubhouse and no players have had any symptoms, Maddon believes his players are OK.

“I have not heard of any symptoms at all,” Maddon said. “And I haven’t heard anything about him specifically. But I think we are all good.”

Angels players were told to head home last week, so Maddon said the only players still in Arizona are the ones who live there during the offseason. Maddon said several players returned to home to Southern California. Two-way star Shohei Ohtani was cleared to return to Japan, but he’s still in Arizona and will instead head to California soon.

Maddon believes players such as Ohtani can still get their workouts in at home and can throw to catchers as long as they abide by proper social distancing protocols. Maddon said he could see others throwing against a wall to stay loose, but there are no informal or formal workouts among players at the club’s Spring Training facility.

“We’re in shutdown mode right now,” Maddon said. “It became increasingly clear it didn’t make sense [to host workouts]. But there’s no playbook. No way to know how to react. I think MLB has does a good job of informing people. We have to apply common sense.”

Maddon believes the 2020 season will be played after a delay, but he said it’s important to adhere to the CDC’s guidelines of avoiding groups of more than 10 people for the next eight weeks.

“You’re talking to an optimist,” Maddon said. “We’re hoping to get everything going by mid-May. From what I understand, that would be the quickest. I think it’s about following the rules about not going out and not interacting, and staying put to help those numbers to decrease. I believe the season will be played but it may not be the full 162.”

For now, Maddon is living in his RV in Tempe, Ariz., and said he’s been riding his bike around the RV complex to get exercise. He’s been cooking with his crock pot and watching plenty of MLB Network, but he said being at home so much has made him realize that he’s not close to retiring just yet. Maddon, 66, signed a three-year deal to manage the Angels before this season.

“I figured out something real fast,” Maddon said. “I don’t want to retire any time soon.”


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