TORONTO -- The Blue Jays have shut down their facilities in Dunedin, Fla., after one player exhibited coronavirus symptoms, the team announced on Friday.
The club issued a statement following a report from ESPN that a player on the Blue Jays' 40-man roster underwent testing after exhibiting those symptoms.
“The Toronto Blue Jays confirm that personnel at the club’s Spring Training facilities in Dunedin, Fla., have undergone testing for COVID-19, after a player presented symptoms consistent with those of the virus. The Blue Jays are following protocols put in place for this scenario, including guidelines from MLB and the club’s medical team. As a result, the Blue Jays have suspended operations at their Dunedin facilities for the time being.”
As the Blue Jays have prepared for the potential resumption of the 2020 season, some players have returned to Dunedin while others have stayed there throughout, with some having homes in the area. Further updates on their facilities, including their Spring Training home at TD Ballpark, are expected when the club has more information.
Earlier Friday, the Phillies, who are based out of nearby Clearwater, confirmed that five players and three staff members had tested positive for coronavirus. Their first confirmed case came on Tuesday, and 32 other players and staff are currently in the process of being tested.
While teams prepare for a potential return to play, the Blue Jays are facing the unique challenge of the U.S.-Canada border and the restrictions that come with it during this international pandemic. The club is preparing for the possibility of being based out of Toronto or Dunedin, with health concerns a top priority as the state of Florida continues to see a high number of new cases. In the province of Ontario, which has a population of nearly 15 million people, 178 new coronavirus cases were announced Friday by officials, marking the sixth consecutive day that number has come in under 200 as the provincial government continues to reopen the province regionally and in phases.