Red Sox pull Xander Bogaerts from game after positive COVID test as club’s outbreak grows

Written by on September 1, 2021

Early in Tuesday’s Red Sox-Rays bout in St. Petersburg, Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts was removed and it didn’t appear to be via injury. Here’s the broadcast discussing it: 

Immediately, the thought went to COVID, as the Red Sox have had a bit of an outbreak. Sure enough, a few innings later, the Red Sox confirmed that Bogaerts had tested positive and the team was just notified of the result early in the game. Obviously, the protocol is to immediately remove the player and isolate him. 

The Red Sox now have pitchers Matt Barnes, Martín Peréz, Josh Taylor and Hirokazu Sawamura on the COVID injured list along with position players Enrique Hernandez and Christian Arroyo. Bogaerts will join that group on Wednesday when the Red Sox make their roster move official. Further, three coaches have either tested positive or been deemed a close contact. 

“I’m concerned. I am,” said Red Sox manager Alex Cora before the game Tuesday (via “It feels like it’s one every day. It’s just the nature of where we’re at. This is our reality. We just have to keep doing what we’re doing as far as testing and see what happens. Hopefully this is the end of it, but there are no guarantees.”

As it turned out, it wasn’t the end. Bogaerts happened after those comments. At this point, it would be pretty surprising if this is the end. It seems like it’s spreading throughout the team. 

In the middle of all this, the Red Sox are fighting for an AL playoff spot. They entered Tuesday holding a two-game lead over the A’s for the second AL wild card and trail the Rays 7-1 as of this writing. They are stretched so thin, pitching-wise, that they had to start a guy on short rest Tuesday who had a 7-plus ERA in Triple-A. 

Current track