ATLANTA — The Atlanta Braves are cutting ties with Andruw Jones, saying they can’t afford to keep the perennial Gold Glove center fielder who’s spent his entire career with the organization.
General manager John Schuerholz announced the decision Tuesday, shortly after breaking the news to Jones at Turner Field.
While hoping to stay in Atlanta, Jones wasn’t caught off-guard by the team’s stance. He made $13.5 million this season and was looking for a raise despite slumping badly.
“I’m fine with it,” Jones told The Associated Press when reached on his cell phone. “I’m appreciative of the chance they gave me to play for Atlanta all these years. I understand the decision they have to make. That’s just the way it is. It’s a business.”
Indeed, the move was not unexpected as the 30-year-old Jones batted only .222 in the final season of his $75 million contract. He’s eligible to file for free agency after the World Series.
“It just doesn’t work for us,” Schuerholz said. “It doesn’t demean or diminish everything he’s done, and I thank him for all his contributions. We all will have fond memories of him.”