Appearing on BetQL Daily Friday, Audacy MLB Insider Jon Heyman said that he's heard that most of the star players on the Philadelphia Phillies haven't received one of the three available COVID-19 vaccines.
We don't know the identities of every non-vaccinated player on the Phillies, but former All-Star righty Aaron Nola is one. Nola was scratched from his scheduled start last Sunday in Boston, after he was determined to have been a close contact with third baseman Alec Bohm, who did test positive. Nola ultimately didn't test positive, but was forced to miss his first start since the 2017 season.
Nola will make his first start of the second half of the season Tuesday in the Bronx, but spoke to some media at Citizens Bank Park ahead of the Phillies double-header with the Miami Marlins. Among the questions that the 28-year-old was asked is whether recently having to be placed on the COVID-related injured list will lead to him getting a shot.
"I don't know," he said to the collective media, including Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia. "It's a personal choice. Not right now. I'll keep it at that."
Though some advanced metrics suggest that he's due for some positive regression, Nola has struggled in the first half of the season, pitching to a 4.53 ERA. If he's able to get hot - as he typically does when the weather gets warmer - it's entirely possible that the Phillies could make a run at the National League East title, hoping to return to the playoffs for the first time since 2011.
That said, Dave Dombrowski and the Phillies are in a position where they have to decide in the next week or so whether to make any additions ahead of the July 30 trade deadline. You wonder if the possibility of an outbreak will at all affect their willingness to go all-in.