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Sources — More St. Louis Cardinals test positive, Saturday’s game postponed

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Saturday’s game between the St. Louis Cardinals and Milwaukee Brewers has been postponed following additional positive tests among the Cardinals, according to ESPN and multiple reports.

At least four more members of the Cardinals have tested positive for COVID-19, according to ESPN and multiple reports.

It is not known whether the new positive tests came from Cardinals players. Baseball reporter Craig Mish first reported on the new cases.

Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred had told MLB Players Association executive director Tony Clark on Friday that if the sport doesn’t do a better job of managing the coronavirus, it could shut down for the season, sources familiar with the conversation told ESPN’s Jeff Passan. In text conversations with teammates Friday, MLBPA player representatives also warned about the threat to the season, according to Passan.

Friday’s series opener was postponed after two Cardinals players tested positive for the coronavirus. The game was moved to be part of a doubleheader Sunday — the first set of seven-inning games under an agreement announced by Major League Baseball on Friday.

After learning of the first two positive cases Thursday night, the Cardinals said that they instructed all players and staff to self-isolate in their hotel rooms in Milwaukee until further notice.

The Cardinals’ positives represented the first positive tests for baseball outside of the East Coast since the regular season started last week.

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Giants’ Hunter Pence feels ‘awful’ spoiling Johnny Cueto’s no-hit bid

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San Francisco Giants outfielder Hunter Pence said he felt “awful” that his defensive miscue in Saturday night’s 5-4 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers spoiled teammate Johnny Cueto‘s bid for a no-hitter.

Cueto was dominant most of the night and carried a no-hitter into the sixth inning, when Enrique Hernandez led off by lofting a fly ball to left field for what appeared to be a routine out.

Pence, playing in left, lost track of the ball in the Dodger Stadium twilight, and it sailed over his head as Hernandez coasted to third base for the Dodgers’ first hit of the night.

“Johnny had the magic and everything working,” Pence said. “To spoil that feels absolutely awful. He deserves better.”

Cueto appeared to unravel after that, and the Dodgers scored four runs in the inning to come within a run. His biggest mistake was a hanging curve ball to Justin Turner that resulted in a three-run homer. That was his final pitch of the night.

Before the sixth, Cueto (1-0) had allowed only a third-inning walk to Chris Taylor. He went 5 2/3 innings, marking his second straight outing where he was gone at least five innings. The right-hander allowed four runs on two hits with three walks and three strikeouts.

“Through five innings, Cueto could have shut anyone out in my opinion,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “The stuff kept us off balance and everything was at the hollow of the knee. We didn’t hit a ball hard all night outside of the homer from Justin.”

Cueto developed a blister on his right big toe and said it started to bother him in the fourth inning. Manager Gabe Kapler and a trainer came to check on him in the sixth, but Cueto remained in the game.

“All my pitches were working fine and I felt comfortable,” said Cueto, who became the eighth pitcher born in the Dominican Republic to make 300 starts. “I think the most frustrating thing was the ball that was lost. If that is caught the game changes and maybe I pitch out of the inning. I didn’t throw a lot of pitches. It’s hard to tell how far I could have gone.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Cardinals vs. Pirates on Monday postponed due to coronavirus

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The Pittsburgh Pirates‘ flight to St. Louis on Sunday has been canceled and their game on Monday against the Cardinals has been postponed, sources told ESPN’s Jeff Passan.

By Sunday, the teams will have a better sense as to whether they’ll play Tuesday and Wednesday, sources told Passan.

The Cardinals’ three-game series against the Chicago Cubs this weekend was postponed after the league said two Cardinals players and one staff member tested positive for the coronavirus from samples collected over the past two days.

In total, nine Cardinals players and seven staffers have tested positive since last week. The Cardinals haven’t played since July 29.

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Padres activate Eric Hosmer from IL, option Abraham Almonte

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SAN DIEGO — San Diego Padres first baseman Eric Hosmer was activated from the injured list Saturday after missing 11 of the first 14 games with gastritis.

To make room on the roster, outfielder Abraham Almonte was optioned to the alternate training site.

Hosmer was placed on the IL on Aug. 1, retroactive to July 29. He was scratched from the lineup three previous games.

“I’m feeling a lot better,” he said Saturday. “I’m feeling like I’m getting a lot of my strength back, gaining a lot of the weight I lost. Feels good to be back, being able to do something with the guys.”

Hosmer said he never received a precise diagnosis of the ailment and plans to see specialists after the season.

The team said it was not related to COVID-19.

“I went a couple weeks there struggling to get fluids down, nutrients down,” Hosmer said. “I’ve been on a pretty consistent schedule now as far as eating.”

He has yet to hit a ground ball. He hit a pair of bases-clearing doubles in a 7-2 victory against Arizona in the season opener and a home run in a loss to the Diamondbacks two days later.

He was back at first base and batting fifth against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday night. Rookie Jake Cronenworth, who made seven starts at first during Hosmer’s absence, started at second base and hit seventh. Cronenworth has been impressive with his bat and glove.

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