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Article posted on 08/12/10
Author: Geoff Abrams

Atlanta Brave Chipper Jones' Career May Be Over

Atlanta Braves fans are in mourning today after learning that the team's perennial All-Star third basemen Chipper Jones will need season-ending surgery on his knee. An MRI this morning revealed a partial tear in his anterior cruciate ligament. He sustained the injury Tuesday night while fielding a ground ball in a game against the Houston Astros. Jones had talked about the possibility of retiring at the end of the season back in June. Insiders had said that he would retire with the only manager he's ever played for in the majors, Bobby Cox, who had already announced plans to retire at the end of the season. Jones' agent and friends say that Jones will seek a second opinion and won't make a decision on retirement for some time.

Jones is a sure-fire hall of famer, having appeared in the All-Star game 6 times in his career, collecting the National League's Most Valuable Player Award in 1999, and won the NL batting title in 2008. Among switch-hitters, only Mickey Mantle and Eddie Murray had more career home runs. In 2007 he passed Dale Murphy on the Braves all-time home run list and he trails only Hank Aaaron. If he does decide to step aside, Jones leaves with a .307 lifetime batting average, 406 home runs, and 1,445 RBI. He is also that rare player in today's game to stay with one team for his entire career, having been selected first overall by the Braves in the 1990 amateur draft.

The news is also grim for the Braves, as Jones is an important clubhouse leader for the team, and, after getting off to a slow start this season, Jones had gotten hot recently. The team is currently in first place, two and half games ahead of the defending NL Champion Philadelphia Phillies. They have missed the playoffs four years in a row after winning the NL East division a record 14 years in a row.

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