Nolan Arenado | Paul Goldschmidt Sep 14, 2021; New York City, New York, USA; St. Louis Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado (28) talks to first baseman Paul Goldschmidt (46) after being stranded on the bases against the New York Mets in the top of the tenth inning at Citi Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The St. Louis Cardinals will be without two superstars when the team travels to Canada to face the Toronto Blue Jays for a two-game series on Tuesday and Wednesday.

NL MVP candidates Nolan Arenado and Paul Goldschmidt aren’t vaccinated for COVID-19, and Canadian regulations don’t allow unvaccinated people to enter the country. Goldschmidt (5.1 WAR) and Arenado (4.8) are No. 2 and 3 in MLB (and lead the NL) in wins above replacement, according to FanGraphs. Veteran catcher Austin Romine is also unvaccinated, and pitcher Jovan Oviedo can’t travel because he has an expired passport.

Putting aside the worldwide health ramifications of the vaccine, the Cardinals aren’t close to the same team without Arenado and Goldschmidt. Additionally, the Cardinals are in the thick of the NL playoff race, 2.5 games back of the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Central and holding a one-game lead for the third NL Wild Card slot. Each game the rest of the way could be the difference in the Cardinals reaching the postseason or not.

Oh, and then there’s the fact that the Blue Jays currently hold the top of three AL Wild Card slots and have a 95.7% chance to make the postseason per FanGraphs. They’re given a 14.7% chance to reach the World Series, the sixth-highest odds. So, if the Blue Jays reach the World Series, these unvaccinated players wouldn’t be able to play road games in Toronto.

Well, after the Cardinals lost 6-3 to the tanking Cincinnati Reds on Sunday, Arenado and Goldschmidt were asked about their decision to not be vaccinated.

Arenado said that he doesn’t feel he “needed” to get it and added that he’s “very safe.”

Before the game, Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak alluded to Arenado’s desire to start a family as a reason for being hesitant to get the vaccine.

Arenado was asked about that and said, “Yeah, that’s part of it.” He added, “And it just sucks we can’t all be on the same page about it.”

Arenado referenced speaking to doctors, as did Goldschmidt, who added, “And so I think you’ve got to put your health above everything.”

And then Cardinals starting pitcher Miles Mikolas — who was the losing pitcher in Sunday’s game, and proceeded to wear a cowboy hat that led to quite the slip-up from Al Hrabosky on the Cardinals’ postgame show — told the media that he wishes he never got the vaccine.

Mikolas: “I wish I had also not gotten the vaccine, but it’s a personal choice.”

When asked why he feels that way, Mikolas expanded: “Because a lot of the stuff coming out about it, I don’t think is great. I’m pretty healthy. I don’t think it was 100% necessary. But I got it at the time; it seemed like a good idea. But looking back, it’s one of those things that maybe I’d have rather not gotten it.”

Here’s the Mikolas postgame media session (his vaccine thoughts are at the 1:32 mark):

It also needs to be pointed out that the same regulations apply in the United States. Arenado mentioned that “those are the rules of Canada.” It’s the same way in the United States, but all Blue Jays players are vaccinated.

This comes after Philadelphia Phillies star catcher J.T. Realmuto recently said, “I’m not going to let Canada tell me what I do and don’t put in my body.”

Additionally, NBA star Andrew Wiggins of the Golden State Warriors recently made comments similar to Mikola’s: “I still wish I didn’t get [the COVID-19 vaccine], to be honest with you.”

About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at