WASHINGTON — As the Mets collect players’ responses to a survey asking them if they plan to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, J.D. Davis said Friday he hasn’t given the matter much thought.
MLB and the MLBPA, in a joint initiative, are encouraging players to receive the vaccine. If an 85 percent threshold is reached within a team, safety protocols will be loosened.
“I haven’t really thought about it,” Davis said, when asked if he plans to be vaccinated. “I have been so focused on baseball and getting ready for the season. I have been concentrating on getting at-bats and getting my swing right, getting ready for defense. It’s a personal preference for me. It really hasn’t crossed my mind. This topic has come up over the last couple of days. With us moving from Florida to D.C. the last couple of days, I just really haven’t sat down and really thought about it.”
Davis said the survey and vaccine have not been a topic of discussion among the Mets players.
“Vaccinations, I am trying to be sensitive to the general public and to the family and friends out there,” Davis said. “But at the same time I think it’s been a topic that has been in the works. I don’t really know the attitude or guys’ personal decisions if they want to get vaccinated or not. I think some of the details are going around in text messages of trying to figure out who wants what.”
Davis added that the incentive of loosened protocols might not sway players.
“We’re a pretty close-knit group of guys,” he said. “I know a lot of the guys really aren’t getting the itch to really go out and mingle or outdoor dining or go to bars or restaurants and have that kind of normal lifestyle. We are so focused on baseball right now and getting ready for the season.”
Taijuan Walker is now the Mets’ scheduled starting pitcher for the home opener Thursday against the Marlins. Jacob deGrom, Marcus Stroman and David Peterson are lined up for the series in Philadelphia beginning Monday. Next Friday is an off-day, which would give manager Luis Rojas the option of bringing back deGrom on normal rest the following day or starting Joey Lucchesi (perhaps following an opener).
Rojas was encouraged that Carlos Carrasco, who is on the injured list with a right hamstring tear, threw 15 pitches against batters in Port St. Lucie.
“Carrasco has advanced real well,” Rojas said, noting the right-hander is “week-to-week” as he rehabs.