Charles Barkley had a brief coronavirus scare in mid-March, right around the time the league hit pause on its season, but announced he’d tested negative on March 23, good news for basketball fans everywhere.
Those 11 days between his announcing he’d been tested and his negative results, however, were long and trying, both for Barkley and… Mike Trout?
Why was the South Jersey native and Los Angeles Angels megastar part of Barkley’s health concerns?
Barkley explained during a recent appearance on ESPN’s Baseball Tonight podcast with Buster Olney that he had recently visited the Angels’ spring training for a speaking appearance, about 10 days before he started feeling possible symptoms.
Big baseball fan Charles Barkley joins @Buster_ESPN on #BBTNpod to talk about how he was starstruck by Willie Mays and Hank Aaron, his love for Max Scherzer, and why he called Mike Trout and Patrick Ewing first after getting COVID-19 test results 👇🎧➡️ https://t.co/D9IJhnvonE pic.twitter.com/XLiazRDWri
— ESPN Podcasts (@espnpodcasts) May 14, 2020
So when Trout heard Barkley was being tested for the virus, he reached out.
“When I got tested for the coronavirus, TNT called me and said, ‘Hey, Mike Trout wants your number,'” Barkley said.
“I’m thinking, Mike Trout? He’s going to call and check on me, make sure I’m alright. Then he calls, he’s like, ‘Hey Charles, I just wanted to check: did you get your test results back?’ I’m like, ‘Nah man, they told me it’s going to be a couple days.’ And the thing that was hilarious is, he was calling to see if I had it, because he wanted to make sure he didn’t have it.”
Barkley said he felt bad for Trout because, while Barkley was waiting for his results, Trout was basically waiting for the exact same thing. Trout called him “every other day”, according to Barkley, during that stretch of uncertainy.
Barkley said the first call he made after receiving his test results was to Trout, to put the Angels star’s mind at ease.
“I was so upset that Mike was quarantined, waiting on my results,” Barkley said. “I can laugh about it now, but he was calling every other day to check on my results, so he could feel like he didn’t have the coronavirus. I can laugh about it now, but it was not funny six days into my quarantine.”
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