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Coronavirus live blog, Aug. 2, 2020: Illinois records 12th straight day with over 1,000 new COVID-19 cases

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The latest

Illinois records 1,467 new COVID-19 cases, 14 more deaths

A sign announces to maintain social distance and wear mask during the COVID-19 pandemic at Vernon Hills Athletic Complex in Vernon Hills, Ill.
Nam Y. Huh/AP Photo

Illinois on Sunday notched its 12th straight day with a four-digit daily coronavirus caseload as health officials announced 1,467 new COVID-19 cases.

The new infections, which brings the state’s total to 181,943 cases, account for roughly 3.8% of the 38,945 tests results reported to the Illinois Department of Public Health in the last 24 hours, keeping the state’s testing positivity rate over the last week at 3.9%.

Illinois averaged 1,503 new cases a day over the last week. The last time the state averaged that many cases over a seven-day span was the last week in the peak month of May.

For weeks, Gov. J.B. Pritzker has been worrying about what he has called a “mild uptick” in COVID-19 cases could be a sign the state is “heading the wrong direction.”

Pritzker sounded the alarm Thursday, saying Illinois was at a “danger point” as cases continue to trend upward. And one day later, health officials put 11 of the state’s 102 counties on notice for being at a “warning level” after a series of outbreaks — mostly among young people — tied to risky activities, including large gatherings and crowded bars, churches and restaurants where social distancing guidelines weren’t enforced.

Read the full story here.


News

1:15 p.m. Cubs’ third baseman Kris Bryant in MLB’s COVID-19 protocol

Cubs’ third baseman Kris Bryant showed gratitude to Reds infielder Mike Moustakas for self-reporting his COVID-19 symptoms and felt it would empower players around MLB to do the same. Just a few days later, it was Bryant who made the same decision.

Bryant was scratched from the Cubs’ lineup minutes before Saturday’s game due to gastrointestinal issues – which fall under the list of COVID-19 symptoms.

Manager David Ross said his All-Star third baseman was not available on Sunday as he’s now in MLB’s COVID-19 protocol.

“It’s strange because we’ve never been in this situation before as baseball players,” Bryant said Wednesday about self-reporting. “You say you have the sniffles and it’s like you’re judged or looked down upon and stuff like that.

“I told Moustakas out there, I know he was caught up in the protocol, and I thanked him, because that’s how we’re going to finish the season … You have to check that box in the survey that we fill out every morning and go from there. But I respect everybody who says they have something.”

Read more from Russell Dorsey here.

12:15 p.m. Champagne losing its fizz as global coronavirus pandemic clobbers sales

Champagne is losing its fizz. For months, lockdown put the cork on weddings, dining out, parties and international travel — all key sales components for the French luxury wine marketed for decades as a sparkling must at any celebration.

Producers in France’s eastern Champagne region, headquarters of the global industry, say they’ve lost an estimated 1.7 billion euros ($2 billion) in sales for this year, as turnover fell by a third — a hammering unmatched in living memory, and worse than the Great Depression.

They expect about 100 million bottles to be languishing unsold in their cellars by the end of the year.

“We are experiencing a crisis that we evaluate to be even worse than the Great Depression” of 1929, said Thibaut Le Mailloux of the Champagne Committee, known by its French acronym CIVC, that represents some 16,000 winemakers.

Read more from the Associated Press here.

7:50 a.m. Lena Dunham reveals debilitating battle with COVID-19

Lena Dunham says her body “revolted” in a debilitating month-long struggle with COVID-19.

The 34-year-old creator and star of “Girls” gave a detailed account Friday on Instagram of what she said she experienced after testing positive for the coronavirus in mid-March, just as much of the nation was shutting down because of the pandemic.

“It started with achy joints,” Dunham writes, “then the pain was joined by a crushing fatigue. Then a fever of 102. Suddenly my body simply revolted.”

She went into isolation and felt severe symptoms for three weeks, she said.

Dunham said she was treated by a doctor in her home and she did not have to be hospitalized, and said she knows she is lucky to have exceptional health care and flexible work.

She tested negative after a month and was able to see people in her inner circle again, but said she is having lingering problems.

Read more from the Associated Press here.

7:45 a.m. Cardinals-Brewers postponed after more positive test results

The Cardinals-Brewers game in Milwaukee on Saturday was postponed after one more player and three staff members with St. Louis tested positive for the coronavirus, a person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press.

The Miami Marlins received no new positive results in their latest round of coronavirus testing, a different person familiar with that situation said, but second baseman Isan Diaz opted out of the season.

The Philadelphia Phillies, meanwhile, said they had no new positives from tests a day before. Players were permitted to access Citizens Bank Park for staggered workouts beginning in the afternoon.

The people with knowledge of the Cardinals’ and Marlins’ situations spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity because the tests had not been released publicly.

Read more from the Associated Press here.

7 a.m. Illinois logs 1,639 new coronavirus cases Saturday as death toll surpasses 7,500

Health officials on Saturday announced another 1,639 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Illinois, the latest four-digit daily tally as Gov. J.B. Pritzker warns the state is on the precipice of a dangerous viral resurgence.

The new cases were confirmed among 39,809 tests received by the Illinois Department of Public Health, keeping the state’s testing positivity rate over the last week at 3.9%.

That number has risen from 2.6% over the course of a month. Illinois closed out the final two weeks of June averaging about 682 new cases per day.

The state has averaged 1,419 new cases per day since mid-July, while Friday’s total of 1,941 was Illinois’ highest caseload since May 24.

For now, coronavirus deaths have remained relatively low in Illinois as cases have rebounded. Officials announced another eight deaths were attributed to the virus, raising Illinois’ pandemic toll to 7,503.

Read more from Mitchell Armentrout here.


New Cases

  • Health officials on Saturday announced another 1,639 people have tested positive for COVID-19 in Illinois
  • Lena Dunham says her body “revolted” in a debilitating month-long struggle with COVID-19.

Analysis & Commentary

8:00 a.m. With baseball season at a critical crossroads, all involved — even the Cubs — must do better

No hugs, no spits, no errors.

No fist bumps or high-fives, either.

Masks on whenever possible, proper distancing in the dugout and so on.

Major League Baseball’s 2020 operations manual provided an extensive list of things players can’t do in a pandemic season, but some things aren’t as straightforward as they appear when recommendations meet reality.

Even the Cubs — an extreme rarity in baseball, still without a positive COVID-19 result among players since intake testing began a month ago — are having a hard time living up to the letter of the law in terms of health-and-safety protocols on the field.

‘‘We definitely probably high-five more than is allowed,’’ manager David Ross admitted, ‘‘but we’ve got hand sanitizer waiting right afterward. We’re doing the best we can and trying to have fun and win ballgames.’’

But is that good enough? MLB commissioner Rob Manfred doesn’t think so. According to an ESPN report, the embattled Manfred told MLB Players Association executive director Tony Clark the season could be shut down — as soon as early next week — if the sport doesn’t navigate its way through the critical crossroads it finds itself at right now. And Manfred clearly is putting the onus on the players.

Read more from Steve Greenberg here.