Ruben Rodriguez of El Nuevo Dia reports (via Twitter) that Vazquez has pulled out of the World Baseball Classic (he was scheduled to pitch for his native Puerto Rico) and may retire due to right meniscus surgery.
It's unknown as to how he injured his knee, but it appears as if this will be the end of his career (via James Wagner of the Washington Post).
Nats and Mike Rizzo had scouted Vasquez in Puerto Rico for starting rotation depth. Hearing retirement could be soon for the right-hander.— James Wagner (@JamesWagnerWP) February 27, 2013
Several teams were scouting Vazquez prior to this latest development. The Tampa Bay Rays, Boston Red Sox, Washington Nationals and Kansas City Royals were just a handful of the teams looking into acquiring his services.
Even after taking a season off, Vazquez was throwing a respectable 93 miles per hour.
Vazquez took a season off after putting together a very solid campaign with the then-Florida Marlins. He pitched to a record of 13-11 with a 3.69 ERA in 192.2 innings. His WHIP of 1.183 was considerably lower than his career mark of 1.249.
Should this be the end for Vazquez he'll be remembered for several things. For one, he'll be remembered for the early dominance he displayed as a young fireballer on the Montreal Expos. He was one of the lone bright spots on a team that didn't have much to smile about in the early 2000s.
His two failed trips to the New York Yankees in 2004 and 2010 will also be pretty memorable, especially that he only lasted one season each time. Vazquez was unable to handle the pressures of New York and pitched to ERAs of 4.91 and 5.32, respectively.
Overall, Vazquez will retire with a record of 165-160, an ERA of 4.22 and 2,536 strikeouts over 2,840 innings pitched.
While inconsistencies plagued his career, Vazquez was considered near the top pitchers in baseball when he had it going. Unfortunately for him, that just wasn't all the time.