The 20 Saddest Retirements in Baseball History

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The 20 Saddest Retirements in Baseball History

Chronicling the “saddest” retirements in baseball history can be a thorny endeavor. Not merely because of ranking whose retirement was “sadder” than whom else’s, but by virtue of the definition of saddest itself.

Saddest as in a tear-jerking moment, as a beloved player or childhood hero is forced to hang up his spikes—from either age, injury or tragedy—causing even the most stoic of us to well up?

Or saddest as in an embarrassing end to a once-great career, a former diamond star who stayed too long and stained his legacy with an undignified finale?

Or maybe it’s the saddest to only a certain segment of fans—or perhaps just to a single person.

Fortunately, enough of each variety litter baseball lore that ranking the 20 saddest retirements in the history of the sport isn’t so difficult.

Because there is nothing quantifiable about this topic, the individual rankings—perhaps except for No. 1—don’t matter and weren’t given excessive thought. It’s enough that they made the list. (Frankly, I’m just happy that I can count to 20.)

So without further ado…

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