A's reliever Jake Diekman is considered a high-risk player for the 2020 MLB season, but as of now, he has no plans to opt out.
So that means his teammates need to be extra cautious regarding the coronavirus. If one of them contracts the virus, they could pass it to Diekman. That outcome could end up being very bad.
Since the age of 11, Diekman has had ulcerative colitis, a disease that affects the colon. In 2016, Diekman underwent surgery to remove his colon. A year later, he had a second procedure where doctors used his small intestines to create a "J-Pouch," a replacement colon.
No one understands the risk to Diekman more than A's manager Bob Melvin.
During a Zoom conference call with A's reporters Saturday, Melvin mentioned that he plans to address his team Sunday about taking the coronavirus precautions as seriously as possible.
“How important it is to try to stay in as much of a bubble as we possibly can,” Melvin said, according to The San Francisco Chronicle's Matt Kawahara. “It is literally like it is in real life, understanding that you’re doing this for the person next to you, too.
"You’re staying healthy for not only yourself and your family but your teammates and their families.”
Melvin will be sure to mention Diekman.
“His name will come up as well, that it’s very important to take this seriously,” Melvin said, according to Kawahara.
Melvin's comments made their way to Amanda Diekman, Jake's wife.
Really can’t say enough about how thorough and thoughtful Bo Mel has been with Jake through all of this. We appreciate it so much and feel genuinely cared for by him. https://t.co/Vp4CFc6YkV— Amanda Diekman (@Amanda_Diekman) July 4, 2020
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Melvin is widely loved by his players, and this is another example of why. He cares about all the guys.