Unvaccinated Yankees, Mets can't play home games under current NYC rules

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Move over, Kyrie Irving. You've got company.

A spokesperson from New York's City Hall said Tuesday that unvaccinated players on the New York Yankees and New York Mets will not be able to play home games, according to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News.

This is not due to NYC's broad health and safety regulations banning unvaccinated people from entering gyms, restaurants and entertainment complexes, which Mayor Eric Adams repealed last week. According to the Daily News, unvaccinated professional athletes are not allowed to play due to a private employer mandate that was put in place by former Mayor Bill deBlasio in late December. This mandate is the same one that's currently preventing the unvaccinated Irving of the Brooklyn Nets from playing at home.

The spokesperson told the Daily News that it's possible the mandate could change in the future, but that individual exceptions would not be made.

“We have to worry about the health of almost nine million people. No one is trying to hurt Kyrie Irving or a Yankees player,” the spokesperson said via the Daily News.

Additionally, the spokesperson said that the Yankees and Mets playing their games outside has no bearing on the mandate — it applies to them the same as it applies to Irving and the Nets. Unvaccinated MLB players on any team will also not be able to travel to Canada if or when their team plays the Toronto Blue Jays.

Aaron Judge continues to dodge vaccination question

While over 80 percent of MLB Tier 1 employees and players were vaccinated by the end of the 2021 season, there are still holdouts. It's not known which players on the Yankees and Mets are unvaccinated, but Yankees slugger Aaron Judge, who didn't answer the vaccine question last year, continued in that vein on Tuesday, saying that he's focusing hard on spring training and won't say whether or not he's vaccinated.

As far as whether the mandate is likely to change soon, Adams is continuing to enforce it. According to the Daily News, he "has not indicated that he’s considering dropping the private sector mandate." Just last month Adams fired nearly 1,500 city employees who had refused to get mandated COVID-19 vaccine. Dropping the private sector mandate while keeping the public sector mandate would be a controversial move for Adams, who took office on Jan. 1, 2022.

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 14:  A detail shot of the Mr. Met logo on the jersey of David Wright #5 of the New York Mets during the game against the New York Yankees at Citi Field on Wednesday, May 14, 2014 in the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Anthony Causi/MLB via Getty Images)
Unvaccinated Yankees and Mets players won't be allowed to play home games due to NYC's current rules. (Photo by Anthony Causi/MLB via Getty Images)
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