Bob Costas criticizes unvaccinated MLB players: 'You're hurting your own team'

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(The Hill) — Veteran sportscaster Bob Costas criticized unvaccinated MLB players who were required to recently sit out games in Canada due to vaccination requirements.

Costas noted during an interview on CNN that 10 players from the Kansas City Royals were recently required to forgo four games in Canada against the Toronto Blue Jays because of COVID-19 vaccination requirements, including outfielder Andrew Benintendi.

He also mentioned St. Louis Cardinals first baseman Paul Goldschmidt and third baseman Nolan Arenado who were also ineligible to play in several recent games against the Blue Jays.

“So leave aside any medical opinion, leave aside the politics of it. This is a team sport,” Costa said during the interview. 

“We’re not talking about Novak Djokovic on his own, deciding not to get vaccinated in an individual sport. This is a team sport. And no matter whether you agree or disagree with the mandates or any country’s rules and regulations, you are hurting your own team.”

COVID-19 vaccination has been a controversial topic in professional sports since the rollout. Athletes who have refused to get the COVID-19 vaccine have received blowback for their decision to prioritize personal decisions over health and safety protocols and team priorities. 

Djokovic, who is unvaccinated, made headlines earlier this year after he was barred from playing in the Australian Open after he refused to comply with the country’s COVID-19 vaccination requirements.

Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers also received criticism over misleading comments he made that suggested he was vaccinated when he was not.

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