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Coronavirus concerns prompt Red Sox to quarantine prospect from Taiwan

A young fan holds a baseball in hopes of getting an autograph before a spring training game between the Minnesota Twins and the Boston Red Sox on Monday, in Fort Myers, Fla.
(John Bazemore / Associated Press)

A Boston Red Sox prospect from Taiwan has been prevented from joining the team at spring training because of concerns about the coronavirus outbreak.

A Red Sox spokesperson told the Boston Globe that the team is using “an overabundance of caution” with 20-year-old pitcher Chih-Jung Liu.

According to the Globe, Liu flew from Taipei to San Francisco last week, then to Fort Myers, Fla., where he was supposed to join the rest of the team at spring training. Instead, the newspaper reports, he has been confined mainly to a hotel room.

Liu wrote on Facebook that he’s receiving three meals a day and spending his time lifting weights, going for the occasional run, learning about the Red Sox online and reading, according to the Globe.

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The International Olympic Committee has three months before it must decide on whether to cancel the Summer Games because of the coronavirus outbreak.

CNN reports that Liu is being monitored by Red Sox medical staff and is expected to be able to report for minor league player physicals Saturday.

Red Sox infielder Tzu-Wei Lin, also from Taiwan, told the Globe that he, too, was briefly quarantined this spring.

“I had been here for a week and they said I needed to go back to my apartment,” Lin said. “I was fine. I stayed away for one day and that was it.”

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More than 81,245 coronavirus cases have been confirmed worldwide, according to Johns Hopkins University. Most of the cases have occurred in Asia but only 32 in Taiwan; there have been 57 confirmed cases in the United States.

The MLB and its players association have yet to comment on the matter.


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