Kansas City Royals catcher Salvador Perez is the latest MLB player to rest positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). The Royals announced Saturday that Perez has tested positive, but is asymptomatic and in good spirits. He has 12 days remaining in his 14-day quarantine at home.
"Asymptomatic. I don't feel anything," Perez said during a conference call with reporters Saturday. "Nobody in my family has tested positive. Everybody is negative ... Wear your mask. You never know where you can get it."
Because COVID-19 is a "non-work-related" injury, it is subject to the privacy guidelines in the collective bargaining agreement. That means Perez had to give the Royals permission to announce he tested positive. Without Perez's permission, the Royals would not have been able to discuss his absence from summer camp.
MLB created a new COVID-19 injured list with no minimum or maximum stay. It can be used not only when a player tests positive, but also when a player shows symptoms or has contact with someone who is confirmed to have COVID-19. A player must meet certain criteria to be activated off the COVID-19 list, including two negative tests at least 24 hours apart.
Perez, 30, missed the entire 2019 season with Tommy John surgery. He appeared in 13 Cactus League games prior to the shutdown this year and was poised to be behind the plate on the original March 26 Opening Day. Perez hit .235/.274/.439 with 27 home runs in 2018, his last healthy season.
COVID-19 attacks the respiratory system. The long-term effects are still unclear but there is evidence it can damage the lungs, heart, and brain in some cases.