David Bell: Reds focused on handling COVID-19 protocols better

Two games postponed Monday because of outbreak with Marlins

The bad news kept coming for Major League Baseball on Monday, the fifth day of the season.

The Miami Marlins postponed their home opener against the Baltimore Orioles after as many as 14 people from the organization, including players and coaches, tested positive for COVID-19 in recent days. The Yankees and Phillies also postponed their game because the Yankees would have been using the clubhouse the Marlins used during the weekend in Philadelphia.

ExplorePhotos: Reds vs. Tigers

This news followed frustrating developments for the Reds, who lost Matt Davidson to the 10-day injured list with a positive COVID-19 test Saturday and then saw Mike Moustakas and Nick Senzel sidelined when they woke up Sunday not feeling well.

“I don’t even want to think about it,” Reds reliever Pedro Strop said Monday. “That’s negative stuff that can be on your mind and could shut down your desire to compete. (Coronavirus) is dangerous. We all knew when we said, ‘Yes, let’s do it,' it wasn’t going to be easy. We just need to stick to the protocols and keep being careful and just keep going until the end of the season. I want to play so bad. We are playing. Hopefully, we can go through without issues and handle the COVID-19 better. Let’s see what happens.”

The Reds opened a four-game series against the Chicago Cubs on Monday at Great American Ball Park after losing two of the first three games at home to the Detroit Tigers.

Moustakas and Senzel were not in the lineup for the second straight day. Bell said Monday afternoon the Reds hope to have an update on them soon.

ExploreNOTES: Mahle ready for first start

“We’re hopeful that they’re feeling better,” Bell said. “That’s really our only concern. We had three guys total out (Sunday), so we’re just hopeful they’re all feeling better.”

Bell said there’s anxiety almost every morning when we wakes up and checks his email to see about his own COVID-19 tests results.

“We’re just doing everything we can, trying to control everything we can,” Bell said. “That’s really all we can do. Beyond that, there’s risk. No matter how hard we try, we’re not going to be perfect. There’s a highly-contagious virus. There’s a pandemic going on. Unfortunately, we knew people were going to get sick, and I feel terrible for the teams that are dealing with it. I’m just hopeful they’re healthy as soon as possible.”

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Bell knows the Reds may have to rethink high fives, which haven’t entirely disappeared from the game despite the pandemic, and work on other ways to decrease their chances of spreading the virus.

“When people get sick, I think it’s important to remember it’s no one’s fault,” Bell said. “You can always do better. That’s our focus. We’re looking every day at how we can do better. The other part of that is we’re playing baseball, and that’s why I think it will never be perfect. It’s a little different environment than other work environments that people are trying to stay healthy in. that’s not an excuse. It’s just the reality.”

TUESDAY’S GAME

Cubs at Reds, 6:40 p.m., FS Ohio, 700