Aaron Nola reported to Phillies camp on Monday, threw in the bullpen, then announced that he did not have COVID-19.
“All my tests have been negative,” the right-hander said.
Nola said his absence from camp — which officially began Friday — was because he came in contact with someone who tested positive.
“I’m glad to clear this up,” Nola said. “I was exposed to another person who tested positive. I had no symptoms. By MLB protocol, I had to stay home for seven days.”
Nola said he “stayed home” in the Philadelphia area. He added that he did not know where the exposure happened. He had previously been in Clearwater and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, his hometown.
Nola would not say if he had been exposed to a teammate or a club official who had tested positive. The Phillies have had several positive tests.
Nola has thrown regularly during the shutdown. He said his arm felt good and that he expects to face hitters in the next few days. That would put him in line to start during the first week of the season, perhaps even the July 24 season opener. The schedule will be announced tonight.
“I’m glad to be back,” he said after his workout Monday. “It felt good to throw off a nice mound.
“Everything felt normal, except we’re wearing masks."
Manager Joe Girardi said Nola looked good during his bullpen session. Girardi would not put a projected date on Nola's first start, saying he wanted to gauge the pitcher for a few days before he locked anything in.
Nola said he has not considered opting out of the season but respects the decision of players who have done that.
“It hasn’t crossed my mind, but I understand that a lot of these guys have young families,” he said.
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