On Second Thought: Athletics’ Heim Will Skip Winter Ball This Time Around

Reports out of the Dominican Republic saying rookie Oakland Athletics catcher Jonah Heim would be playing winter ball in the DR with Toros del Este were wrong. Between the unsettled nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and Heim and his partner expecting a child early next year, Heim has decided to give winter baseball this time around.
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It seems that Toros del Este jumped the gun when releasing a 2020-21 Dominican winter league roster that included Oakland A’s catcher Jonah Heim.

Heim played winter ball with Toros del Este last year and they had him listed as coming back in a tweet early in the week.

But what Twitter gives, Twitter also can take away. And apparently Toros del Este got this one wrong.

According to a tweet from Heim’s father, James, the 25-year-old switch-hitter will, after considering all his options, sit this winter season out.

“I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade, but Jonah has decided he will not be going, James Heim’s tweet said. “With the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and with the baby on the way, it’s better to forgo this DR season.”

Heim and his girlfriend, Kenzie Prince, are expecting early next year.

Heim made a good impression last spring, but before rosters could be set, COVID-19 shut down baseball for 3½ months. There was thought that he might make the roster when the season finally began in July. He didn’t, but he was with the team as part of the A’s taxi squad.

He was called up on Aug. 24 to be Sean Murphy’s backup. His first Major League hit came a day later and he got into 13 games in the final month, including a dozen starts. But he didn’t play at all in the A’s two post-season series.

Follow Athletics insider John Hickey on Twitter: @JHickey3

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