Cubs' Happ hopes MLB will ease restrictions for vaccinated players

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Chicago Cubs' Ian Happ rounds the bases after hitting a home run during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals Thursday, May 20, 2021, in Chicago. It was his second of the game.

    Chicago Cubs' Ian Happ rounds the bases after hitting a home run during the fifth inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals Thursday, May 20, 2021, in Chicago. It was his second of the game. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 5/29/2021 8:44 PM

The majority of major league teams have reached the 85% vaccinated threshold that allows some COVID protocols to be loosened.

The Cubs have not. Player rep Ian Happ said he is hoping that the protocols will continue to be eased for vaccinated players.

 

"I respect my teammates a lot and obviously wouldn't push anybody to do anything they're not comfortable with," Happ said Saturday. "I've made my decision to be vaccinated and I did that early on in Arizona, I was one of the first guys on the team to do it. I felt like for me and my family, to see my mom and grandma and everybody, it was important for me to get it done. I feel very safe and happy with my decision that I've made.

"As we continue on this path, as more and more players are vaccinated, as fans are vaccinated, as we start to open things up, I'm looking forward to the union and MLB working together on a new set of protocols to hopefully get ourselves back to a little bit more of a normal state of playing baseball."

What worries Happ and other players is being in the wrong place at the wrong time and being sidelined because someone else tests positive for COVID. Or if the vaccinated player tests positive.

"I completely agree that if you have a player that's fully vaccinated, has done everything right, has done as the CDC has recommended," Happ said. "If that person then tests positive, is asymptomatic as we would expect for a fully vaccinated individual, you would hope that guy could still compete on the field and wouldn't be punished and lose days, games and the ability to help his team when he's not showing any symptoms.

"I hope we can make some headway there. I understand there are some CDC issues with not exactly knowing if you can transfer as a vaccinated, asymptomatic individual. Hopefully we can get some clarity there. As someone who is vaccinated, if I were to test positive, I would be very happy to be able to continue playing. That would be a tough one."

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