Washington Nationals outfielder Juan Soto has tested positive for COVID-19 and will not be in the lineup for Thursday's Opening Day against the New York Yankees, Nationals GM Mike Rizzo confirmed on Thursday. Soto was not part of the team's 30-man roster.
This is not the Nationals star's first encounter with the virus, as the outfielder had come in contact with a teammate who had the virus earlier in July causing him to miss the beginning of Summer Camp. After weeks in quarantine, Soto rejoined Washington last week.
The timetable for Soto's return is not definitive, but it is now to be expected that the Nationals will be without him for some time. Soto will first have to test negative for the virus twice in a row, show no signs of fever for 72 hours and be deemed a non-risk by MLB and doctors before resuming play.
Though health is the main concern, Soto's absence creates a big hole in Washington's lineup. With Anthony Rendon no longer a member of team, Soto was primed to take an even larger role in terms of production in 2020.
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