Detroit Tigers outfielder Austin Meadows will remain out of the lineup for the remainder of the season as he revealed in a post on Friday that he's "struggling with my mental health" in addition to a myriad of previous injuries.
"What I have told very few people is that I also have been struggling with my mental health in a way that has extended my time away from the game that I love so much," Meadows said in his statement. "I've been dealing with this privately with a great team of professionals, but I need to continue to put in the hard work off the field towards feeling mentally healthy."
Meadows, 27, appeared in 36 games this season, missing time with vertigo, COVID-19 and tendinitis in his Achilles, according to his post. He's been around the team but hasn't played in a game since mid-June. He had a .675 OPS in 147 plate appearances this season.
"While I've been back in the clubhouse the past few weeks, and plan to remain with the club through the end of the season, I am still not ready to return to the field," he said.
Meadows was acquired from the Tampa Bay Rays just days before Opening Day this year. He hit 27 home runs in 2021 and was hitting .328 on May 1 but missed time that month due to vertigo. He struggled in his return, going 5 for 27 before straining both Achilles and being placed on the IL. Then came news of his off-the-field experiences.
"I am so grateful for my family, my teammates, and the Tigers organization for supporting me through this," Meadows said. "I can't do this alone, and 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."
Meadows was the ninth overall pick of the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2013. He's played in five major league seasons.