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Justin Turner was among the main topics of conversation on social media Wednesday morning after the Dodgers’ star celebrated among his team on the field after Los Angeles won the 2020 World Series — despite the fact he tested positive for COVID-19 hours prior.
The third-baseman was suddenly absent Tuesday night after testing positive for the virus prior to the game. However, the explanation for his absence was not made public until after the Dodgers won.
While viewers were still stunned by the news, Turner was televised returning to the field — without a mask at times — to hug, high-five and cheer among the team.
Turner reportedly refused to leave the field when security attempted to have him go back into isolation on orders from the league.
The league on Wednesday afternoon said the commissioner’s office would open an investigation. “While a desire to celebrate is understandable, Turner’s decision to leave isolation and enter the field was wrong and put everyone he came in contact with at risk,” the league said in a statement cited by the Los Angeles Times. “When MLB Security raised the matter of being on the field with Turner, he emphatically refused to comply. The Commissioner’s Office is beginning a full investigation into this matter and will consult with the Players Association within the parameters of the joint 2020 Operations Manual.”
Beyond fans being irked by Turner’s behavior, MLB insider Ken Rosenthal was particularly hard on the athlete, calling his actions “most disturbing.” He added Wednesday morning, “Something worth noting that is not fully explored in column: Dodgers players and staffers were not only ones on field post-game. There were family members, MLB officials and others as well.”
Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman told reporters after the game, “I don’t think there was anyone that was going to stop him from going out [onto the field].”
Shortly after the game, Turner said via Twitter, “Thanks to everyone reaching out! I feel great, no symptoms at all. Just experienced every emotion you can possibly imagine. Can’t believe I couldn’t be out there to celebrate with my guys! So proud of this team & unbelievably happy for the City of LA.”
It is unclear if Turner will face repercussions from the league for his actions.
3 p.m.: Updated that the commissioner’s office is opening an investigation.
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