The New York Post reports Leiter and Smoltz will appear remotely
Sportscasters Alois “Al” Leiter and John Smoltz will not appear in-studio for MLB Network after both refused to take a coronavirus vaccine, according to a report from the New York Post.
The MLB Network didn’t immediately respond to TheWrap’s request for comment and confirmation.
According to the New York Post, MLB Network recently instated a mandate that requires all employees be vaccinated beginning Sept. 1 — but the network agreed to avoid letting Leiter and Smoltz go by reaching a “compromise” where they would stay on-air but appear on their shows remotely.
The two commentators are not expected to return to the studio in New Jersey, but remain in-house studio analysts for the MLB Network.
54 year-old Smoltz, who began working for MLB Network after a 22-season career, is the lead analyst on Fox for its MLB coverage. He routinely calls some of the league’s biggest games including the World Series and is scheduled to call a division series game this October.
Leiter, age 55, is an advisor for the New York Mets’ operations in addition to calling games. He played for both the Mets and New York Yankees for 19 seasons as a pitcher and began his analyst career with ESPN in 1999. Leiter joined MLB Network in 2009 as a studio analyst.