Chipper Jones, who turns 40 in April, will get paid $14 million this season, his 19th with the Atlanta Braves. The seven-time All-Star and 1999 National League MVP has also had surgery on both knees in the past two years. But don't plan on throwing him any retirement parties anytime soon.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that Jones isn't ready to say that this could be his final season. His contract has a team option that pays him $7 million in 2013. If he appears in 123 games this season, that number automatically goes up to $9 million.
"As long as I stay healthy and I'm having fun, I'm going to keep going," he said Tuesday before taking part in an informal hitting session at Turner Field, the paper reports. "I sit here with three weeks to go before spring training and I'm not ready to say this is it."
Jones played 126 games last season, batting .275 with 18 homers, 33 doubles and 75 RBIs. Plus, his .976 fielding percentage was second among major league third basemen.
"I think if I struggle with the knee injuries again and I'm not having any fun, and if the team's struggling, obviously, I'll make that [retirement] decision when it hits me," Jones said, according to the Journal-Constitution. "As of right now, I'm signed through the end of this year and we've got an option for next year. I'm certainly going to take everything into account, but my body will tell me when that day comes. It'll be cut-and-dried."