Another Met claims getting COVID vaccine is a personal choice

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Sarah Valenzuela, New York Daily News
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Of the players asked for what they think their fellow teammates will or will not get a COVID-19 vaccine, Michael Conforto repeated the same thing J.D. Davis said.

“It’s a personal choice,” Conforto said. “Everybody has their own opinions on whether or not they’re going to go into get vaccinated. But what I will say is when we get home. Anyone who wants a vaccine will be able to get one and I think that’s a good thing for the league, good thing for the teams.”

Conforto acknowledged he and the Mets know the severity of the virus that’s killed more than 555,000 Americans and infected at least 30 million more. Even though the CDC has touted the efficacy and safety of any of the three COVID vaccines available, there’s still hesitation to getting vaccinated from the virus.

Conforto would not offer an explanation as to why players would not want to get vaccinated, especially considering how the virus affected them last season and how it’s already delayed the start to this season.

“I can tell you we have great doctors, we have all the current information on these specific vaccines and, in particular, we’re very educated,” he said. “Beyond that, I don’t think I can really speak to the reasons why they would or wouldn’t.”

MLB is incentivizing players to get vaccinated. Teams could loosen restrictions around gathering in the dugouts and wearing masks among other apects, if 85% of players and Tier 1 staff on a team received the vaccine. So far, the St. Louis Cardinals and several other teams have hit 85% threshold.

Conforto revealed that back in February — which he said was two weeks before he arrived to spring camp — he and his fiancee were diagnosed with COVID.

“I was very lucky. I had really really mild symptoms. My fiance actually, she had more on the moderate side, she experienced everything I had,” Conforto said. “I certainly had some shortness of breath. It wasn’t easy for me being so close to spring training, I was really trying to work out, and I just couldn’t do that. But I was lucky, and coming into spring training, it was not ideal to not have worked out for a couple weeks, or 12 days or whatever it was, but we were able to build up and make sure that I was ready to go by the time we were supposed to start.”

The Mets had COVID cases last August, in which one player and one staffer tested positive for the virus. The positive results forced the team to postpone a game against the Marlins and the Subway Series. This season, after at least three Nationals players tested positive for the virus, Opening Day and the Mets-Nationals entire opening weekend series was postponed.

When asked directly whether he planned to get vaccinated or not, knowing how the virus has impacted the league, his team and himself, Conforto said he was not comfortable sharing.

“Right now I have the antibodies and so that’s something that I’ve continued to talk to the trainers about, what that means and how long those antibodies will stick around,” he said. “So at this point I’m not comfortable sharing, whether or not I will. But I can say we have all of the current information, we’re very educated on it. And, you know, it’s going to be available to us anytime that we do want to get vaccinated.”