Yadi clarifies COVID comment, group photo

August 25th, 2020

Cardinals catcher on Monday afternoon clarified a photograph posted on his Instagram account that showed him seated on a table surrounded closely by six people -- none wearing masks -- including four members of the team’s traveling party.

The Cardinals have played just 12 games entering Monday since a COVID-19 outbreak forced the team to shut down for 16 days. Ten players, including Molina, were among 17 Cardinals employees to test positive.

His original caption for the photograph was: “[Expletive] Covid.”

In a follow-up to the original post, Molina wrote:

“I wanted to make a few things clear with the picture I sent. I know COVID is a serious virus, trust me, I had it for a week myself! Many of the people in the picture are the same way, and we got together to celebrate beating COVID.

“The other people in the picture are tested routinely because they work directly at my house or are part of my family! I understand how this looks from the outside, and even though I do this most of the time, I will make sure to be more careful to wear masks and socially distance in the future.

“And, my message under the picture was to show the world that we can beat this thing! I know this won't make everyone understand, but I hope it clears up some concerns people have …

“Not because I don't care about the protocols, but because this won't beat us!”

The Cardinals, upon learning of the post, released a statement from president of baseball operations John Mozeliak that read:

“Given our experience with the outbreak, we have to be extra vigilant as we fight the coronavirus with the three basic principles of social distancing, wearing a mask, and proper hygiene. The Cardinals as an organization must emphasize this in any setting as we move forward. We will remind players and staff that these practices must be done at both home and on the road for us to be successful.”

Cardinals hitting coach Jobel Jimenez is one of the people in the photograph, which was originally posted early Monday morning. Molina and shortstop Paul DeJong are the first Cardinals players to return from the COVID-19 injured list, while eight other players remain on it.