Alec Bohm, J.T. Realmuto, Aaron Nola, and Kyle Gibson can’t play in the two-game Toronto series because they don’t have the COVID vaccination and therefore cannot enter Canada.
These stories always cause a lot of HUBBUB on both sides, but Kyle Schwarber, who is hotter than a Carolina Reaper pepper at the plate, says it’s not a big deal:
Kyle Schwarber on #Phillies not having an optimal roster in Toronto: “Just because we’re headed to Toronto doesn’t mean someone’s being bad teammate because they didn’t get [vaccinated].”
— Scott Lauber (@ScottLauber) July 11, 2022
Now this is only Schwarber speaking, so maybe there are other guys in the clubhouse who are annoyed by the situation, but we’re also talking about a 162 game season here, and if the Phillies can’t survive without four dudes who weren’t even gonna play in both games anyway (Nola pitched last night), then you’ve got a real concern.
At the risk of burying the lede, this quote got more play last night:
J.T. Realmuto on not being able to join the Phillies in Toronto due to his vaccination status: pic.twitter.com/7suM66OYaB
— NBC Sports Philadelphia (@NBCSPhilly) July 12, 2022
It’s an extremely unfortunate situation. Obviously my teammates know how I feel about them, and how bad I want to be out there with them. It’s unfortunate I’m not able to make the trip… I’m a healthy, 31-year-old professional athlete and I just didn’t feel the need to get (the vaccine). I had COVID a couple of times with super-mild symptoms back when it first came out and when it came time to decide whether I needed a vaccine or not, I talked with a couple of doctors I knew, told them my story, and just really decided I didn’t think I needed it. I wasn’t going to take it because I was told to…. I’m not gonna let Canada tell me what I do and don’t put in my body for a little bit of money. It’s not worth it.
Realmuto is going to lose about $250,000, and if that’s a “little bit of money” then I’m Jimi Hendrix on the guitar. Or, well, I guess that’s a “little bit of money” to him, so it’s all relative, but getting the vax or not is his personal choice and yadda yadda. Kyle Schwarber doesn’t care. Other teammates likely don’t care. And it’s pretty stupid that one baseball team is operating under a different rule set because they’re located in Canada while the other 29 operate under different COVID guidelines. Streamline this nonsense. Serenity now!