Major League Baseball saw an uptick in positive COVID-19 tests heading into the final week of spring training. 

In their Friday update, MLB and the MLB Players Association announced that two new players and two staff members tested positive for the coronavirus over the past week. While this represents a 0.03% positive rate among the 13,978 tests collected, only one new player tested positive the previous week. Two players tested positive from March 5-12. 

Since intake testing upon arrival at spring training, MLB has reported 33 total positive COVID-19 test results, with 25 of those coming from players. Thus far, every club has avoided a significant outbreak or cluster that could’ve kept it out of action in March. 

This isn’t to say there haven’t been any close calls in spring training. Cleveland Indians All-Star third baseman Jose Ramirez and slugger Franmil Reyes were temporarily isolated away from team activities earlier this month after they violated COVID-19 health and safety guidelines. Such seemingly small actions resulted in outbreaks and handfuls of postponements across MLB during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign. 

As of the final weekend of March, MLB and the MLBPA have announced no plans to mandate that players and other personnel receive COVID-19 vaccines to participate in the upcoming regular season. 

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