Major League Baseball teams won't be allowed to publicly identify players who test positive for the coronavirus during the 2020 campaign.
New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman and Chicago Cubs general manager Jed Hoyer confirmed Tuesday that teams are prohibited from disclosing the names of players who test positive during the season under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, according to ESPN's Marly Rivera.
Players are allowed to announce their own positive test results, according to Hoyer.
"We're allowed to talk about numbers, but we're not allowed to give individual names," Hoyer said. "It's up to those individuals to decide if they want to announce it. As a group, with the media, we're going to have some conversations about what we can talk about and what we can't talk about. We're not at liberty to say which injured list a player is placed on."
The 2020 campaign will feature a new COVID-19-related injured list. The list will include players who test positive, players exposed to the virus, and those who exhibit symptoms. Cashman said any conclusions drawn from team announcements would be speculative.
"The information I've been given is (the media) will be left to try to figure that out," he said. "Somebody might be down and out, but we might not be able to speak to why, and it would be a speculating circumstance (where) you would have to use your journalistic superpowers to determine if there's anything there or not, what the circumstance might be."
Players on the COVID-19-related IL will be instructed to self-isolate and follow the health guidelines agreed upon by MLB and the Major League Baseball Players Association.