There have been quite a lot of COVID-19 impacts in the sports media world recently, with the latest coming from Atlanta Braves’ analyst Jeff Francoeur. Francoeur joined the Braves’ media operation in 2018 and became their lead TV analyst on Fox Sports South ahead of the 2019 season, but he’s now going to miss at least some games when their abbreviated 2020 regular season begins Friday thanks to being diagnosed with the COVID-19 coronavirus. Francoeur announced on Twitter Tuesday that he’s tested positive for the disease, and is currently asymptomatic and quarantining, so he won’t be calling games with Chip Caray and Tom Glavine until he’s cleared to return to the booth:
I have tested positive for COVID-19. I am asymptomatic and feel fine, but I will be in self-quarantine until I’m cleared to get back to the broadcast booth with Chip and Tom. In the interim, I’ll be following the Braves on FOX Sports South. Please keep safe and wear a mask.
— Jeff Francoeur (@JeffFrancoeur) July 21, 2020
Francoeur’s diagnosis comes amidst spiking COVID-19 case numbers in Georgia, and amidst controversy over governor Brian Kemp suing in an attempt to reverse Atlanta mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms’ mask mandate. COVID-19 has also impacted the Braves’ roster; first baseman Freddie Freeman spoke out the other day about his earlier bout with the disease, which had him hit a temperature of 104.5 degrees and had him praying “Please don’t take me,” and Yasiel Puig was all set to sign with the team (in a story broken by a Braves’ fan) before he tested positive for the disease. Braves’ players Will Smith, Touki Toussaint and Pete Kozma also all tested positive for COVID-19 earlier this month.
Our thoughts go out to Francoeur as he recovers. Hopefully he’ll be able to rejoin the Braves’ booth soon.