Sports

White Sox vaccine mandate has minor (league) flaw


The Chicago White Sox are going to mandate vaccine boosters for minor leaguers, but there aren’t real repercussions if they don’t get it.

The Chicago White Sox are going to mandate vaccine boosters for minor leaguers, but there aren’t real repercussions if they don’t get it.
Image: Getty Images

Even when baseball’s management side gets it right, they manage to get it wrong.

The White Sox are going to mandate COVID boosters for their minor leaguers, as ESPN reported Friday, after last season having required the initial vaccine. That’s good, even if the Sox can only impose such a rule on minor leaguers because they’re not unionized. (Unions also should be in favor of workplace vaccine mandates, in the name of member safety, but that’s another conversation.)

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But that’s not all the White Sox are doing. As reported by The Athletic, any Chicago prospect who doesn’t get vaccinated won’t be granted their release from the organization. That’s a problem, and it’s where the Kyrie Irving idea that they’re trying to control you, man gets traction.

Not to defend the selfish choices of idiots, but if there’s a choice between getting vaccinated or not being able to work, if you make the sociopathic choice to refuse to participate in public health, you ought to be able to go find another job where they don’t care so much about such things as whether their employees spread a deadly virus in the community.

If you’re the White Sox, and you rightly believe that it’s so important for your players to be vaccinated that you don’t want them around if they choose not to be, why do you want to keep the holdouts in your organization? How does someone who’s chosen to dodge the shot for this long already, and again refuses in the face of not being able to play, fit into your organization’s idea of character?

Of course, this is an organization whose manager is Tony La Russa, so the White Sox’s idea of organizational character is confusing at best. But if you’re going to have a vaccine mandate on your team, and you’ve got a player who refuses the vaccine, just cut the player, and give more chances to the guys who can be bothered to care about the people in the room with them.

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