One of the brightest stories from earlier this year, a guy who grinded for a decade and then got a chance to shine, is over. White Sox slugger Yermin Mercedes just announced on his Instagram that he’s retiring.
To say it is a shock is an understatement, because, while Mercedes had been demoted earlier this year, he was raking at Triple-A and figured to be back up at some point.
View this post on Instagram
In an Instagram post, Yermin Mercedes, an April sensation with the Chicago White Sox, says he’s stepping “away from baseball for a while … it’s over.”
Mercedes was sent to AAA earlier this month and had been playing well, hitting .309/.377/.655. pic.twitter.com/11P6EgpiKn
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 22, 2021
I’m sure there’s much more going on here than we yet know, and I just hope whatever happens, Mercedes winds up getting whatever support he needs and/or gets to do what he wants to do. Maybe he just needs some time away.
I can’t not mention it: Mercedes’ manager took another team’s side in a dust-up about Mercedes DARING to swing at a 3-0 pitch from a position player (and hit a dinger in the process), and it was all downhill from there. A coincidence? Probably mostly, because Mercedes’ early success involved a lot of good luck. Regression was coming. But to not have support at that time? Couldn’t have felt good.
In any case, for now, this is just an Instagram announcement. The White Sox haven’t heard anything official:
“The White Sox are aware of tonight’s Instagram post by Yermín Mercedes, who is currently on the active roster of our Class AAA team in Charlotte, NC. At this point in time, the White Sox have not received any official notification from Yermín concerning his future plans.”
— Scott Merkin (@scottmerkin) July 22, 2021
UPDATE: Just kidding? Apparently:
According to the Sox, Yermín Mercedes is in uniform with Triple-A Charlotte and on the active roster for tonight’s game at Durham.
— LaMond Pope (@lamondpope) July 22, 2021
I would imagine we’ll hear more on this at some point? And although saying that “it’s over” and suggesting you were retiring on social media isn’t great, that’s not the same thing as cleaning out your locker in the middle of a game and going home. So I guess, strictly speaking, Mercedes didn’t actually do any retiring.