Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Félix Hernández Electing Not to Play in 2020

by Mark Bowman –

Félix Hernández posted a picture of himself wearing a mask when he arrived at Truist Park on Friday for the start of the Braves’ Summer Camp.

By Saturday night, Hernández had decided he will not play this season because of COVID-19 concerns.

“I haven’t talked to him directly yet,” Braves manager Brian Snitker said. “He worked out yesterday, threw a side [session], went home, and I found out actually this morning.”

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Hernández’s decision came after the Braves announced on Saturday that Freddie Freeman was one of the team’s four players who had tested positive for COVID-19.

Snitker believes the revelations of these positive tests, combined with the challenges players face to adhere to the strict and necessary safety protocols, may have led to Hernández’s decision. The 34-year-old pitcher was set to make a little less than $400,000 if he earned a spot on Atlanta’s roster.

“I think it’s going to be ongoing,” Snitker said. “It’s way, way different. Everybody told us it would be, but until you live it, I don’t think you know it. Guys come in and there are outbreaks. I think it’s only human nature to process these things, because you’ve got family members involved and children. Things like that aren’t a reality until we get here and live it.”

Hernández signed a Minor League contract in January and was bidding for a spot in Atlanta’s starting rotation. The righty was attempting to extend a successful career that has been beset by injuries over the past few years.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

Though he is no longer the overpowering pitcher who won the 2010 AL Cy Young Award and earned six All-Star selections with the Mariners, Hernández showed promise when he allowed just three runs over 13 2/3 innings before Spring Training was shut down in the middle of March.

“He was doing exactly what we had asked him to do, which was get guys out,” Snitker said. “He didn’t do anything to not warrant making our club in the spring.”

With Hernández deciding not to play, there is now an even better chance Sean Newcomb will get work as a starter this year. The Braves’ projected rotation now consists of Mike Soroka, Cole Hamels, Mike Foltynewicz, Max Fried and Newcomb.

Even with Hernández out of the picture, the Braves still plan to use a piggyback system with their starting pitchers during the season’s first couple of weeks. This means the starters will be limited to 3-4 innings and be replaced by a reliever, who will be slated to complete 2-3 innings.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

“We have plenty of guys,” Snitker said. “We’re going to stretch these guys out with their simulated games, live [batting practices] and intrasquad games. I think our depth is really strong and we can withstand a little.”

Mark Bowman has covered the Braves for since 2001.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

You May Also Like


A Coffee County Sheriff’s Department deputy has been terminated after he was arrested for alleged DUI while on duty Thursday, Feb. 23. According to...


A water main break in the New Union area has left two county schools with no water. New Union Elementary is without water and...


A tragic accident occurred on Monday night at 9:24 PM near 3261 Hillsboro Highway, resulting in the death of 60-year-old Timothy Sullivan. According to...


District superiority is up for grabs Friday night in Manchester. Coffee County Central’s Lady Red Raiders (no. 4 AP) and the Warren County Lady...