As COVID cases are rapdily increasing around the country, the Brewers are dealing with more players going down with the illness. Before today’s game, the team announced that relievers Jake Cousins and Hunter Strickland had been diagnosed with COVID-19 as well. Jandel Gustave was also identified as a close contact and has been isolated as well.
The Brewers have two additional COVID-19 cases: Hunter Strickland and Jake Cousins tested positive this afternoon. Jandel Gustave has been named a close contact.— Adam McCalvy (@AdamMcCalvy) July 31, 2021
Prior to today’s game, the Brewers placed Cousins and Gustave on the IL. Strickland has not been added for now, though it may have been because the team did not have a corresponding roster move immediately. This worked out for the team in the short term, with John Curtiss and Daniel Norris, freshly acquired by trade, reporting to the team to take their spots.
No additional details were reported for now, but this is definitely concerning after Christian Yelich was diagnosed with COVID-19 earlier this week, and Jace Peterson was also placed in isolation after being named a close contact. There were no positive tests on Monday when the remainder of the team was tested, so it’s unknown if the cases are related or not.
It’s also a reminder about how much of a threat COVID is now. The team passed the 85% vaccination threshold earlier this season, but with the Delta variant now dominant in the country, cases are on the rise. Vaccinations still provide strong protection, both from symptomatic infection and from hospitalization. However, breakthrough cases are still possible, as shown with Yelich’s case. For these cases, Tom Haudricourt had some more details in regards to these players:
Counsell said Strickland and Cousins had been vaccinated. Like Yelich, they reported symptoms. And like Peterson, Gustave got caught up in contact tracing.— Tom (@Haudricourt) July 31, 2021
I won't tell you I know everything about contact tracing but it's my understanding that it only gets you sidelined if you haven't been vaccinated. https://t.co/FFvxuu1dHH— Tom (@Haudricourt) July 31, 2021
For now, games aren’t at risk and the Brewers plan to proceed as normal. They are currently playing tonight against the Brewers and will finish their series tomorrow afternoon.