The Tigers placed outfielder Austin Meadows on the 10-day injured list (retroactive to April 7) due to anxiety. Akil Baddoo was called up from Triple-A in the corresponding move.
President of baseball operations Scott Harris released a statement in regards to the transaction, saying that “the Tigers fully support Austin’s decision to step away from the team and prioritize his mental health. As an organization, we have taken many steps to provide and destigmatize mental health resources, and we will do more to help our players tackle the mental and physical challenges they face on a daily basis. We commend Austin for confronting these challenges head-on and ask for our fans in supporting him through every step of his journey back to the field.”
Meadows dealt with similar issues at the end of last season, saying in September that “I hope in sharing my experience I can touch at least one person who might be going through their own struggles and encourage them to reach out to someone for help.” Just prior to the start of Spring Training, Meadows gave a positive update about both his mental and physical health, yet that battle is obviously still ongoing. As Harris’ statement indicated, the Tigers will surely give Meadows all the time he needs to get himself to a better place with his anxiety. We at MLB Trade Rumors wish Meadows all the best in his recovery.
The Rays traded Meadows to Detroit for Isaac Paredes just prior to the start of the 2022 season, and Meadows appeared in only 36 games in his first year with the Tigers. Beyond his mental health struggles, Meadows also spent on the injured list with strains in both of his Achilles tendons, vertigo-like symptoms, and a bout of COVID-19. The result was a .250/.347/.328 slash line over 147 plate appearances, but among all Detroit players with at least 140 PA, Meadows’ 101 wRC+ still ranked second on the team in an overall disastrous offensive year for Tigers hitters.
Curly Was The Smart Stooge
High results lead to high expectations, I know, I’ve lived that. Even when you achieve that, higher results are expected. Please don’t judge his decision, he’s a talented guy with monumental decisions ahead of him, hope he brings it all together…
Agreed. I’ve been there, too. This situation manifests itself out of the blue, without rhyme or reason. And on the stage he is on, I’m sure it’s magnified a thousand times more
Hope he can overcome it and find peace of mind and comfort
Fever Pitch Guy
corn – Quite often it’s just a matter of finding a med that works. And even when you do, they typically don’t work forever … so you try another.
Many actors can perform on film but not on Broadway and some musicians have a fear of touring. It’s part of what makes those who can perform on all levels great.
Fever Pitch Guy
dewey – I’d wager most of the guys who have gone public with their issues also experienced anxiety off the field. It’s not just thousands of spectators that trigger it.
Fever Pitch, I was one of those types who either felt jittery, sleepy or generally zoned out on meds. No thanks. What you’re saying is true of course…as is counseling…but for me it became mind over matter. I realized anxiety wasn’t going to kill me, understood its ties to my physical health and moved on. Still shows up once in a while but you manage it
Fever Pitch Guy
corn – I can relate. In my mid 20’s-30’s I had bouts of severe anxiety.
Speaking in front of multiple people? Panic attack.
Job interviews? Panic attack.
It got so bad it happened hanging around at home with just a parent present. I never did try counseling, and never took meds as I couldn’t trust anything mind-altering.
It eventually just went away on it’s own, although I’m convinced it was divine intervention. Ironically I went from having horrendous interviews to having excellent ones, as I received job offers after 95% of them.
Yes I still have my moments, but they are mild at worst and I am able to avoid speaking in front of large groups.
The worst thing you can do is accept the notion that you need meds. Flush them down the toilet and change your lifestyle, especially diet and exercise.
High protein, low carbs, no alcohol, no sugar, no stimulants.
Agreed. I remember my first time hosting a business meeting on Zoom. Multiply that by what an athlete feels especially when some fans heckle, etc. Money doesn’t solve everything.
No general rule will apply to everyone. To think it could is naive.
Those types of lifestyle changes DO help, and they’re the first things I’d try before any medication. But if we’re dealing with a an actual, real chemical imbalance then diet and exercise and “breathing techniques” will only go so far…
I’m one of those stubborn types who doesn’t like to take any meds. I started getting panic attacks right out of the blue as a teenager and it scared the heck out of me because I was a happy (I think) kid, popular, in excellent physical shape, and I had no clue what was going on in my head or how to deal with it.
I lived a spotty, sloppy life until finally seeking help after I turned 30. It was just too many times of failure: pulling myself back up just to fall again, that I felt I had no other choice. Alcohol worked but it’s nasty when you become physically dependent on it.
The meds take a lot of trial and error but once you find what works, it’s like I can live my life the way I want to. I’m not going too deep into the details, but anyone on the fence about seeking help, please give it a try. I feel like my 20s were just a total waste because I refused to admit I needed help.
If it’s a somatic issue, the “general rule” will indeed apply to everyone, but it’s difficult to make lifestyle changes on a permanent basis. It’s tempting to think that when symptoms disappear, you can go back to your old routine but if your metabolism and endocrine system doesn’t change, neither will your need to maintain the discipline.
C Yards Jeff
Liked: especially diet and exercise
High protein, low carbs, no alcohol, no sugar,no stimulants.
Side note: interestingly, high fat in my daily diet also seems to help.
I took meds and they made everything so much easier. No weird side effects, I feel natural. I wouldn’t knock them.
The mountains and valleys of life. A beautiful struggle.
Can we get a list of players who haven’t been injured this season? It would be interesting to know what type of physical maintenance and diet they are performing so as to not get injured. It seems like everyone is getting injured this year.
He’s not physically injured, you should actually read the article before commenting
Mental Health. is still an injury to your body.
Illness is not the same as injury.
Then you don’t understand how illnesses are a form of injury to your body.
I understand that you need a dictionary. Illness and injury are not the same thing.
@sadmarinersfan. Does it matter? I mean why spend time making a point that only you think is interesting? Literally. Only. You.
No, sadmarinersfan is correct.
It sucks to see another guy go down with anxiety from their career and seemingly their passion. You got this Meadows
Teams should avoid him. Feel bad for the guy but it’s a decent liability.
It should simply be factored in to his overall cost. Some players overcome health issues and others don’t.
Here’s hoping this won’t cause teams to avoid him at the end of his contract. If he decides to step away from the game, that’s his decision. If he feels he can play, he should get the opportunity.
If teams tend to stay away from Meadows once he’s on the market again or he’s non-tendered after this season, people need to realize that its a business decision and not necessarily any form of “discrimination”. If a player has a recurring physical ailment, teams tend to be quite wary and perhaps make future contracts largely dependent on performance. This situation has now recurred, his performance seems to have regressed and is no different.
When you are obligating millions of dollars, tbere needs to be little doubt that a player will be able to perform the duties of the job, whether his issue is physical or mental.
That said I wish Austin the very best.
Fever Pitch Guy
Buy – It’s no different for non-players. Anxiety can be debilitating no matter what the occupation.
I hope you feel better soon.
Dumpster Divin Theo
Hope he gets the rest and maintenance he needs-thinking 10 days is not gonna be enough: Give him as much time as he wants
Dumpster Divin Theo
All the best to Austin, because he’s a good guy. How the Rays dumped Chris Archer on the Pirates and got 2 decent years from him, then moved him in a trade for a then relatively unknown, Paredes. Smart, lucky, or just good at what they do.
Player development. They excel at. Pirates development was never good and got out dated. A gm trying to save his job traded players he could never develop for a veteran on a good contract. Then had the bright idea to try and improve him lol. One of the best trades in Pirates history. Owner needed a wake up call to clean house. Most people think the Pirates have been rebuilding forever but they were actually trying to contend. 2021 2022 is it.
Not sure if you’re being facetious regarding “one of the best trades in Pirates history” but I suspect you are
Hindsight is easy, of course. Meadows was productive but then had injury and this situation, Glasnow was a flamethrower whom the Pirates development geniuses could not seem to turn around before he was traded and also faced injury and Baz was an up and coming stud
After a year or two of jettisoning the veteran remnants of a winning team, trading prospects for an up and down starter made little sense then and even in that hindsight, less now
I am in agreement about the last days of the Huntington era, of course. I would doubt they saw Meadows’ anxiety issues back then—doubt they even existed—but their failures with so many prospects like Glasnow provide a blueprint of how not to develop young promising players
And agree that they were “trying to contend” in that period, but trading for a starting pitcher who could at most provide 5-6 wins down the stretch run toward a wild card berth in return for a projected starting outfielder and not one but two projected starting pitchers was amazingly shortsighted
This wasn’t a team heading for a WS run in any way, shape or form
Yeah, I like to think this was Nutting’s wake up call and that Cherington has returned the Pirates to the operational model we’ve discussed. So far, so good
I love that trade. They desperately needed a new gm. Wake up call Bob needed. NH might have been there for 2020 and 2021 if not for that trade. He was great for the 1st half of the decade but it was time to go.
Was hoping he had his anxiety under control. Wishing him well.
I understand him doing what he needs to do. But really makes me think that the Rays knew what was going on. The trade makes more sense knowing all this.
Didn’t Meadows miss time on the I.L. for the same affliction, last year? Maybe the Tigers should hire a team psychologist.
Unfortunately it seems like this could become a debilitating issue for Meadows. Zack Greinke has been able to overcome his anxiety, Khalil Greene wasn’t. Not sure which side Meadows falls on but it’s looking more like Greene’s
Fever Pitch Guy
Rsox – Don’t forget Daniel Bard, who did overcome it and then didn’t and then did and then didn’t. It’s like alcoholism, you still have it even when you’re able to control it.
Jim Eisenreich had Tourette’s … several other players have had psychological issues without ever revealing it. I feel for all of them.
Jimmy Piersall’s anxiety may have been the most severe, watch the movie “Fear Strikes Out” when you can.
Don’t watch “Fear Strikes Out”! Anthony Perkins threw, swung the bat, and ran like an anemic debutante. Just look up his bio.
Fever Pitch Guy
Cartrow – I can’t disagree! Haha!
He was bipolar.
Fever Pitch Guy
johnny – Probably, but back then he was diagnosed with a form of anxiety called “nervous exhaustion”.
Anxiety and anger issues typically go hand in hand.
Parker is off to a hot start in Toledo.
Austin, if you read this, go to the Psychedelic Healing Shack on Woodward just south of 8 mile. Talk to the man who runs the place, he is a shaman. He can help you overcome your anxiety for good.
Same old saw in Detroit, the away team gets calls 6 inches off the plate for strikes, while Detroit at home gets squeezed. It’s been going on here for years and as a fan I’m sick of these dirty umpires. Wentz had two strikes called balls, and he should have gotten out of the inning, but no. When they get the automatic umpires, watch out world, Detroit’s hitters will tear the league up.
Detroit has Parker Meadows so that’s good, and really no one can blame Detroit if this is Austin’s last year here. He’s not alone, and his health is the most important thing.
Sid Bream Speed Demon
This article may have the oddest assortment of comments that I have ever seen.
Feel better soon Austin.
Wonder if calling up his brother could help with some of his mental issues.
If Parker Meadows couldn’t crack this lineup? That should tell you something about him.
For Love of the Game
That he’s young and just got promoted to AAA after spending last season in Double A? Not too many guys go straight from AA to the majors.
That’s not true anymore – i’ll give it up it USED to be, but now AAA has turned into AAAA-storage with parks that average 20 runs per game like Las Vegas does – also why LV isnt a MLB city – but yeah the PCL league offers zero ways to help a prospect blossom, especially pitchers. Way more guys go from AA to MLB now.
Motor City Beach Bum
Hope Meadows feels better soon but in the meantime I hope Baddoo gets back to being Baddoo. He could steal 30 bases this year and hit 15 HRs if he reverts to form
What a joke
Your life is a bigger joke for posting this crud – horrible post, F
People shoudn’t assume that “anxiety” is strictly a mental health issue. The vast majority of cases arise as a somatic disorder that may or may not result in a mental disorder, as is the case with any ailment resistant to effective treatment. Literally anyone afflicted early on by the disorder thinks they are indeed going crazy and the mental health treatment industry is only too happy to agree with you, but it’s wise to first consider a few lifestyle changes before checking yourself in to a facility: Avoid all stimulants such as caffeine and ALL sugars, either natural or added, especially alcohol, which is basically liquid sugar. Get at least some vigorous exercise on a daily basis and never avoid exercise for an extended period followed by a vigorous workout; many athletes experience symptoms in early spring after a relatively sedentary winter. Do your research, especially as it relates to what used to be referred to as the “Glycogen Cycle” and Lactic Acid buildup in muscle tissue. Most importantly, it’s not likely that your mental health is at risk and it’s irresponsible for a mental health professional to treat all cases as such.
Anxiety isnt a broken bone. Read a book.
He probably needs an entire season away from baseball.
For those saying basically overcome with force of will, the vast majority that doesn’t work. It is also incredibly dangerous to try and tell someone else how they should overcome their anxiety if you are not a medical doctor. Just because you may have been able to overcome it, does not mean that everyone can overcome anxiety just by willing themselves to do so.
Fever Pitch Guy
adv – You are 100% correct. Some people are stronger than others, and can therefore handle things better.
We know this year the Tigers are in another tear down from the most recent rebuild. The MiLB system is being revamped so the best players intended for the future will remain in MiLB. Next season, No Miguel Cabrera, Jonathan Schoop, Austin Meadows. The SPs of Turnbull-Mize-Skubal-Manning should be back. Parker Meadows will probably be the CF while Riley Greene moves to a corner. Scott Harris is starting out with much better building blocks than Al Avila had. I’m no fan of over platooning. The 2021 Giants had good SPs, a historically great pen and swan song years from aging stars. Their winning with a roster full of platoon players is not sustainable and I hope that’s not Harris’ model..
I’m skeptical but, this has to be when Akil Baddoo can improve upon 2021. He’s good on the base paths but he’s not hitting and he turns routine outs into web gems.
Hope he can overcome this…..
Fantasy Anxiety Team
Rick Ankiel coach
The Saber-toothed Superfife
Best wishes to Austin Meadows.