Apr 14, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago White Sox catcher Yermin Mercedes (73) looks on after hitting a three-run home run against the Cleveland Indians during the first inning at Guaranteed Rate Field. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago White Sox rookie Yermín Mercedes was as big of a story as anybody in baseball for the first month of the 2021 MLB season. The 28-year-old started the season 8-for-8 at the plate, and crushed some mammoth homers. But after an incredible April (1.113 OPS), Mercedes struggled in May (.619) and June (.411). He was also called out by White Sox manager Tony La Russa in May for swinging on a 3-0 count to hit a home run in a blowout game. And on July 2, he was sent down to Triple-A Charlotte, where he’s remained since.

Well, just a few months after performing incredibly in the majors as a rookie, Mercedes wrote in an Instagram post on Wednesday night that he’s walking away from baseball “for a while.” The Instagram post featured a graphic simply saying, “it’s over.”

Update: Mercedes then deleted this and walked this back with an “I’m back” post Thursday. Click that link for more on his Thursday post. Our original post on his Wednesday post continues below.

Mercedes made the post after being pinch-hit for in the sixth inning of Charlotte’s game on Wednesday night.

The White Sox claim they haven’t received any official word from Mercedes on his plans.

So, we may not know for a while if this is a full-on official retirement, and perhaps Mercedes is just frustrated about La Russa, his recent demotion, and/or something else altogether. But for now, he certainly appears to be walking away from the game.

This is a stunning development after Mercedes was one of the most amazing stories in baseball just a few months ago, and again, as a rookie.

Update: La Russa said that he intends to explain to Mercedes that the slugger “has a big league future.”

About Matt Clapp

Matt is an editor at The Comeback. He attended Colorado State University, wishes he was Saved by the Bell's Zack Morris, and idolizes Larry David. And loves pizza and dogs because obviously.

He can be followed on Twitter at @Matt2Clapp (also @TheBlogfines for Cubs/MLB tweets and @DaBearNecess for Bears/NFL tweets), and can be reached by email at mclapp@thecomeback.com.