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D-backs’ Alex Young has second-hand look at COVID-19 reality

Alex Young (AP Photo/Matt York) and Nicole Griffin (Twitter Photo/@AlexYoung_23)

As baseball makes its way back, Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Alex Young is taking precautions to guard against coronavirus like every other player, but for him, it’s personal.

Young’s girlfriend, Nicole Griffin, is currently a frontline healthcare worker at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas taking care of coronavirus patients.

When the coronavirus pandemic first hit, Young said the two were “freaked out” about the situation because they weren’t sure how they were going to adjust. Young wanted to support her, something that’s difficult with the start of the season.

“For me, it’s just being there as much as possible for her,” Young told reporters on a Zoom call Sunday. “That’s the one downside of being out here and her still being out in Texas is right now she doesn’t have that support. She has her friends, but I want to be there for her.”

During National Nurses Week in May, Young tweeted a photo of Griffin’s name covering the nameplate of his jersey and thanked healthcare heroes for all that they do.

Young said he’s seen first-hand how serious the virus can be from what Griffin has shared and hopes people will take it seriously.

“People who say this virus is a joke, it’s just the flu—it’s way worse,” he said. “I’ve seen first-hand with my girlfriend telling me stories about how bad it is and it’s so unpredictable with people having different symptoms and it just destroys your body.

During the D-backs’ 60-game season, they’ll make the trek out to Arlington, Texas, to play a two-game series against the Rangers. Although he’ll be close to home, he’s not sure he’ll see his girlfriend during that time.

“I didn’t know if my girlfriend was going to be able to come out here at all, so having that series is awesome, but we’ll definitely have to take precautions and talk about what we’re going to do when that time comes just because I’ll be around other people that I haven’t been around in the last couple of months and she’s still exposed and I don’t want to expose anybody on the team either,” Young said.

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