There are some things that are more important than baseball. As fans are constantly reminded, organizations have to make objective decisions, rather than subjective ones, to stay in business. However, every now and again, a club does something that’s not purely based on dollars and cents. The Dodgers are one of those teams.
In March 2019, the Dodgers moved outfielder Andrew Toles to the restricted list. At the time, there wasn’t much information available, and fans only learned more after news broke in June of 2020 that Toles had been arrested after he was found asleep behind an airport terminal in Florida.
Information came to light that Toles had been dealing with mental health issues, which explained why he wasn’t actively playing in the Dodgers system. He had been estranged from his family and they were wholly unaware of his whereabouts until his arrest.
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USA Today’s Bob Nightengale subsequently reported that Toles had been in and out of mental health facilities since leaving the Dodgers. After a promising start to his MLB career, the outfielder just disappeared. That being said, the support from LA fans and their favorite baseball team was resounding. Per the Associated Press’ Ronald Blum, the Dodgers elected to renew Toles’ contract.
The former outfielder being under contract with the Dodgers allows him access to health insurance and mental health care – should he seek it. There is absolutely no expectation from the club that he’ll return to baseball one day. This is the Dodgers doing what they feel is the right thing in a challenging situation.