Yasiel Puig, who recently agreed to sign with the Atlanta Braves pending physical examination, has tested positive for COVID-19. The 29-year old outfielder made the announcement on Twitter and said he's "asymptomatic." Puig also said he hopes to join the Braves after he gets back two negative test results.
"I'm sorry to share with my fans, friends and family who follow me and who really support me, that I have just been notified that I have tested positive for COVID-19," Puig wrote in a statement. Although I tested positive, I am asymptomatic, and I fell absolutely fine. I will be quarantined until I receive two negative test results, which I hope will arrive shortly." Puig went on to say that he's "sad" about contracting the virus, but he believes "everything is in God's timing and that my return to MLB will happen in His perfect plan and timing for me."
Puig continued: "I would have never believed looking in the mirror that I have COVID-19. I urge everyone to take this pandemic seriously, this can happen to anyone, even the healthiest athlete. Puig ended the statement by stating: "Wear a mask, social distance, and follow your local protocols. Please take care of yourselves." Puig testing positive for COVID-19 is a big blow to the Braves who have had a few players test positive for the coronavirus, including All-Star Freddie Freeman. The Braves were going after Puig as they were looking for a right fielder to replace Nick Markakis who decided to opt-out of the season.
"Just hearing him, the way he sounded on the phone, it was tough," Markakis said last week when talking about his conversation with Freeman. "It was kind of eye-opening. With everything that's going on, not just with baseball but all over the world, it makes you open your eyes."
With the Braves starting their season next Friday, it's unlikely Puig will be available at that time. Puig started his MLB career with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2013. He made his first All-Star game the following year and received MVP votes. Puig also spent time with the Cincinnati Reds and Cleveland Indians last year. In 2019, Puig hit 24 home runs with 84 RBIs and 19 stolen bases.