The Phillies placed Travis Jankowski on the COVID-19 injured list on Sunday as the center fielder became the sixth major-league player this month to be placed in coronavirus safety protocols.
Jankowski, who was sharing the starting duties in center with Luke Williams, joins relievers Bailey Falter and J.D. Hammer on the list.
Aaron Nola, Alec Bohm, and Connor Brogdon were on the COVD-19 injured list earlier this month but have since returned to the team. Adam Haseley, who is currently rehabbing in Clearwater, Fla., was placed on the COVID-19 injured list on Saturday.
The Phillies have played games this month without one of their best pitchers, key relievers, their everyday third baseman, and starting center fielder. The team’s coronavirus issues do not seem to be going away.
Jankowski has 18 hits this season in 57 at-bats and moved this month into the starting lineup after spending June as an extra outfielder. The left-handed hitter would have likely started Sunday against Atlanta right-hander Touki Toussaint. He was replaced on the roster by Mickey Moniak and in the lineup by Odúbel Herrera.
The Phillies are one of seven major-league teams who have yet to reach the 85% vaccination rate required by Major League Baseball before a team is allowed to enjoy relaxed restrictions. Phillies general manager Sam Fuld said last week that the team continues to educate players -- both in the majors and at triple A -- about the vaccine.
The Phillies say more than 50% of their major-league roster is vaccinated, but did not provide an exact number.
“We believe in the science behind it,” Fuld said last week of the vaccine. “We believe that it’s effective and safe and we’ll continue to be here as a resource and answer questions and not let it lie. We are making progress. Our vaccination rate has not plateaued or flat-lined.”
The Phillies begin a four-game series against the Nationals on Monday, when Spencer Howard will start against Washington right-hander Joe Ross. Lefty Matt Moore takes the mound Tuesday against right-hander Erick Feede while Zack Wheeler starts Wednesday against lefty Patrick Corbin. Thursday’s starter for Washington is TBD, while right-hander Vince Velasquez is scheduled to start for Philadelphia.