Spring training has been open less than two weeks, but manager David Ross already has players following his lead and changing their patterns of behavior. Case in point, the rookie skipper has veteran pitcher José Quintana following his lead and missing time due to the flu. Following the admission by Javy Báez that players weren’t always adequately prepared prior to games, Anthony Rizzo displayed a supreme level of readiness by showing up to the clubhouse on Monday wearing a surgical mask.
Rizzo walks through clubhouse wearing surgical mask. Ross and Quintana both out with flu.
— Gordon Wittenmyer (@GDubMLB) February 24, 2020
Before we go ascribing too much credit to Manager David, however, it’s important to note that Kris Bryant may have been Patient Zero here. As though preparing for his role like a method actor becoming their character, Bryant set the tone as leadoff hitter when he showed up sick to Cubs Convention. When you really start to think about it, the manager being such good friends might be the real problem here. All that hugging and cup-bumping with his buddies surely hastened the spread of this illness.
In all seriousness, let’s hope the clubhouse attendants are hosing that place down with Lysol and installing decontamination chambers in the walkways. The Cubs don’t have broad margins for error, so the last thing they need is to have a bunch of guys struggling with intestinal fortitude as they’re trying to prepare for the long season.