MLB completes Justin Turner investigation

November 6th, 2020

issued an apology on Friday for his actions after testing positive for COVID-19 during the World Series, and MLB has closed its investigation without taking any disciplinary action.

Turner was notified of his positive test and was removed from the Dodgers’ World Series Game 6 clincher against the Rays. After the game, Turner left isolation, returned to the field to celebrate with his teammates and posed for the team photo without a mask.

Commissioner Rob Manfred wrote that the investigation “helped put in context” Turner’s actions, citing teammates’ encouragement for Turner to join the celebration, on-field miscommunication with officials and MLB’s failure to assign a security detail to assure Turner’s compliance. Manfred also commended Turner’s exemplary conduct prior to the incident.

“With this in mind, I am closing this matter by applauding Justin for accepting responsibility, apologizing and making a commitment to set a positive example going forward,” Manfred wrote.

Turner’s apology included an explanation of his actions during and after the game, including taking responsibility for removing his mask.

“In hindsight, I should have waited until the field was clear of others to take that photo with my wife,” Turner wrote. “I sincerely apologize to everyone on the field for failing to appreciate the risks of returning to the field. I have spoken with almost every teammate, coach, and staff member, and my intentions were never to make anyone uncomfortable or put anyone at further risk.”

Dodgers president Stan Kasten wrote that the events surrounding Turner “unfolded rapidly and chaotically, and were ultimately regrettable.” Kasten wrote that “no player was more instrumental in allowing the Dodgers to overcome the adversity created by the pandemic than Justin Turner” for the example he set regarding the establishing and following of safety protocols that allowed the season to be completed.

Turner, 36 later this month, became a free agent after the game.