A number of players have opted out of the 2020 Major League Baseball season due to COVID-19 concerns.
That was only part of Lorenzo Cain’s reasoning, though. The Milwaukee Brewers outfielder told reporters last week that he also wanted to focus on his relationship with God.
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“This lifestyle and everything that’s going on in 2020 has definitely opened my eyes, so I felt the need to opt out — not only for the COVID reasons, but also trying to get my life right with God,” Cain said, per the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
“I’d put God on the back burner. And with this lifestyle and everything that’s going on, I decided to seek God and get closer to God. That’s just something I felt like I needed to do not only for myself but for my family as well. This year has been crazy. It’s been a tough year. I’m definitely at a loss for words with all the things going on right now.”
The 34-year-old Cain said it was a difficult decision to leave and something he still thinks about every day, but reiterated that it was the best decision for him personally and for his family.
Cain had played five games and was in his 11th big-league season when he decided to opt out. After coming up through the Brewers system, he was traded in 2010 to the Kansas City Royals, where he played for five seasons and was named MVP of the 2014 AL Championship Series and an All-Star in 2015. He was also a member of the Royals’ 2015 World Series team.
He returned to Milwaukee as a free agent in 2018, and earned his second All-Star appearance that season, followed by a Gold Glove Award in 2019.
“It really hurt me. It hurt me to leave,” Cain told reporters, per MLB.com. “Honestly, that’s all I’ve been thinking about. I honestly have been thinking about opting back in; I wish I could sometimes. But at the end of the day, I know what I need to do, not only for myself, but for my family.”
Now, he’ll watch the rest of the season with his wife, Jenny, and their three sons: Cameron (7), Jayden (4) and Landyn (3).
“We’re all sitting down and trying to educate each other on different situations and different things,” Cain told the media. “I think we’re all growing as a whole. Definitely hoping that this all gets better, that everybody grows from this and all of this stops someday.”
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