Braves' Felix Hernandez Opts Out of 2020 MLB Season

Atlanta Braves RHP Felix Hernandez
Atlanta Braves RHP Felix Hernandez / Joe Robbins/Getty Images

The potential comeback narrative of one of the best pitchers of his generation was unfortunately squashed this weekend.

According to MLB insider Robert Murray, Atlanta Braves hurler Felix Hernandez has opted out of playing this season, citing concerns over the coronavirus as the reasoning behind his decision.

This is the absolute last thing that baseball fans wanted to hear as Hernandez seem poised to enjoy a bounce-back campaign following a disastrous final season with the Seattle Mariners in 2019. The Braves signed the former AL Cy Young winner to a minor-league deal back in January, which didn't guarantee him a roster spot.

However, Hernandez was dealing before Spring Training was postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak, logging a 1.98 ERA, 14 strikeouts and a 1.32 WHIP across 13.2 innings.

It's sad to hear that we won't be able to see Hernandez take the mound in 2020, but we have to respect his decision to prioritize the health and safety of his family. With that being said, don't be surprised if this starts a trend around the league.