Ian Desmond opts out of 2021 Rockies season

Colorado Rockies

FILE – In this July 29, 2019, file photo, Colorado Rockies’ Ian Desmond follows the flight of his triple off Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Kenta Maeda in the second inning of a baseball game in Denver. Desmond plans to sit out this season to be with his family and help the youth baseball program in his hometown in Florida. The 34-year-old Desmond wrote on Instagram that the “COVID-19 pandemic has made this baseball season one that is a risk I am not comfortable taking.” (AP Photo/David Zalubowski, File)

DENVER (KDVR) — Ian Desmond, Colorado Rockies outfield, is opting out of the 2021 MLB Season.

The announcement, made on his Instagram Story account Sunday morning, says his “desire to be with (his) family is greater than (his) desire to go back and play baseball under these circumstances.”

Desmond is the first Major League Baseball player to opt out of the 2021 season. The outfielder also opted out of the 2020 season. In total, 22 players opted out last season.

Desmond is on the final year of his five-year contract for $70 million. He was expected to earn $8 million in 2021. The Rockies have a $15 million club option for Desmond for 2022.

Rockies pitchers and catchers reported to spring training this past Thursday. Position players are set to report Tuesday.

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