Atlanta Braves third baseman Chipper Jones is heading into his 20th season in Major League Baseball, all of them with the Atlanta club. On Monday, a story was published in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution that made it seem as if he was mulling retirement during Braves Spring Training. Now Jones has responded, saying he has every intention of playing.
On Tuesday morning, Jones addressed the media via phone interview and according to Mark Bowman of MLB.com, he wasn't very happy that his comments were misrepresented.
"Unfortunately, I said it around two guys who don't know me very well, and they didn't realize I was kidding around," Jones said. "One of the guys asked, 'You think you can make it through the season with your knees?' I said, 'Make it through the season, I don't know if I can make it through tomorrow.' Obviously, I'm joking. That's an obvious joke. Really, I just came off the field after playing eight innings. I've had eight at-bats all spring. I was kidding around.
"It was tongue and cheek [sic]. I was kidding. I just got done playing eight innings with three at-bats. I was a little tired. I wasn't by any means suggesting I couldn't make it through the season. If I didn't think that I could, I wouldn't be out there."
Jones' agent was also displeased, calling the speculation a "disservice" to the future Hall of Famer and his career.