Writing for the Associated Press last week, Zimmerman raised these same concerns while weighing his decision.“I have a 3 week old baby. My mother has multiple sclerosis and is at very high risk; if I end up playing, I can pretty much give up on the idea of seeing it until weeks after the season ends, “said Zimmerman. wrote.
“To be clear, I’m not retiring at the moment,” added the 35-year-old front-line player on Monday. “I haven’t decided on my future in baseball after 2020. But this year, I will stay safe at home and do my best to have the guys defend our championship. “
National Director General Mike Rizzo said in a statement that Zimmerman and Ross “have decided not to participate in the 2020 season for their personal health and safety and that of their loved ones”.
“We fully support their decision not to play this year,” added Rizzo. “We will miss their presence at the clubhouse and their contributions in the field. ”
Ross, 27, was to compete for a position in the Nationals’ starting rotation this season.
Diamondback pitcher Mike Leake, 32, also announced plans not to participate in 2020 on Monday. Prior to Leake’s announcement on Monday, the Diamondbacks released their 60 men roster, which Leake was on.
“During this global pandemic, Mike and his family have had many discussions about the game this season,” said Leake’s agent. said on Monday in a statement. “They took into account countless factors, many of which are personal to him and his family. After careful consideration, he chose to retire from the game in 2020. It was not an easy decision for Mike. He wishes the best of luck and the health of his Diamondback teammates this season and looks forward to 2021. ”
As part of the MLB’s 60-game scheduled season, players themselves considered “high risk” may withdraw from the 2020 season while being credited for service time and receive their pro-rated wages for season. Players who are not at high risk but who have pregnant women or members of their family at high risk can also withdraw, but they would lose their salary and their service time.
None of the three players who retired on Monday is known to be at high risk.