Giants outfielder Drew Robinson and Twins shortstop Andrelton Simmons revealed past mental health problems to Jeff Passan of ESPN and Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register, respectively, this week. MLBTR encourages you to read both stories in full.
Robinson, then set to enter his first season in the San Francisco organization, told Passan that he attempted suicide with a handgun last April. Still alive 20 hours later, Robinson decided he wanted to live. While Passan writes that the shot did leave Robinson’s right eye “beyond repair,” Passan explains that doctors marvel that it didn’t do even more damage. Robinson has since undergone four surgeries and received a prosthetic eye.
“It represents my new look on life,” Robinson told Passan. “Even though I have one less eye, I haven’t seen things this clear my entire life.”
Neither Robinson nor the Giants have given up on his major league career. The Giants re-signed Robinson to a minors deal during the fall, and president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi told Passan, “We’re proud he’s a Giant, and we’re excited to see him compete for a job in camp.”
Simmons, previously an Angel who signed with the Twins last week, opted out of the final week of the 2020 season. He explained to Fletcher that concern over his mental health caused the decision.
“It was tough for me mentally to where the thought of suicide crossed my mind,” Simmons wrote to Fletcher. “It was something I vowed a long time ago I would never consider again. I was fortunate to talk to a therapist, which helped me let go of those thoughts. At the end when a lot of people were still going through what most would think of as tough times, the idea of finishing the season in a bubble was too much for me to handle.”
MLBTR salutes Robinson and Simmons for sharing their stories, and we wish the best to those two and all who have dealt with or are currently battling mental health problems. We also encourage those with suicidal thoughts to seek help by contacting the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or by texting TALK to 741741.