Cora believes status of unvaccinated Red Sox will change in September

Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora believes he'll have a full roster the next time his team heads north of the border.

Cora told reporters Wednesday that the team is continuing to have conversations with its unvaccinated players who are unable to travel to Toronto this week for the series against the Blue Jays.

"I do believe when we come into September, it's going to be different. ... It's going to change from our end, leave it at that," Cora said of his unvaccinated players' statuses, according to Alex Speier of The Boston Globe.

Canada's current COVID-19 rules require those who are unvaccinated to isolate for at least 14 days after arriving in the country, which prevents unvaccinated MLB players from playing at Rogers Centre. The United States has similar rules for entry, but all Blue Jays players are fully vaccinated and permitted to cross the border.

Outfielder Jarren Duran and closer Tanner Houck are on the restricted list until the Red Sox return to the U.S. because they remain unvaccinated. Duran had been red-hot at the plate, hitting .385/.429/.539 with four stolen bases during Boston's recent seven-game win streak, which ended in Toronto on Monday.

The absence of Houck was felt Tuesday, when Tyler Danish and Hansel Robles combined to blow the save in the ninth, handing the Blue Jays a walk-off win and giving Boston its second straight loss.

Other unvaccinated Red Sox players include reliever Kutter Crawford, who's currently in Triple-A but was placed on the restricted list during Boston's April visit to Toronto, and injured left-hander Chris Sale.

Some Red Sox players who weren't previously vaccinated for COVID-19 elected to get the shot specifically to be eligible for games in Toronto. Second baseman Trevor Story admitted he got the vaccine as a condition of signing with the team in March.

"To me, it's a very personal decision, whichever way you want to decide. But at the end of the day, that's what it came down to - playing these games in Canada. We obviously know how tough this division is. Each game counts," Story told Speier on Monday. "So here we are."

The Red Sox will make their final regular-season visit to Toronto from Sept. 30-Oct. 2. If the season ended today, the Blue Jays would host Boston in a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre.

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Cora believes status of unvaccinated Red Sox will change in September
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