Braves shortstop Andrelton Simmons made what will likely end up as one of the top-five plays of the 2015 season Friday night against the Mets. The Braves led 2-0 in the top of the third inning. Travis d’Arnaud led off the inning against Braves starter Eric Stults, slapping the first pitch into the hole, just to the right of a diving Chris Johnson.
It was destined, it seemed, to be a seeing-eye single into left field. But Simmons appeared, seemingly out of the ether, to corral the ball. He pulled off a Jeter-esque jump-and-throw — though Jeter never would have had the range to get to the ball in the first place, nor the arm strength — to nail d’Arnaud at first base by half a stride for the first out of the inning.
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Simmons is nearly good enough at his job that he desensitizes us to just how amazing his defense is.
Michael Kopech has opted out of the 2020 season. The White Sox starter informed the team of his decision today, and the team issued a press release to that affect a few minutes ago.
The statement from general manager Rick Hahn. said “we recognize that reaching this decision is incredibly difficult for any competitive athlete, and our organization is understanding and supportive. We will work with Michael to assure his development continues throughout 2020, and we look forward to welcoming him back into our clubhouse for the 2021 season.”
Kopech, 24, has only four big league starts under his belt, all coming in late August and early September of 2018, but after a strong spring training he was likely to make Chicago’s rotation at some point in the 2020 season after sitting out all of 2019 following Tommy John surgery. Kopech was among the players sent to Chicago from the Red Sox in the Chris Sale trade back in December 2016. Others involved in the deal included Yoán Moncada, Victor Diaz, and Luis Alexander Basabe.
Now, however, Kopech has opted out.