After spending more than a decade in Major League Baseball, Michael Young reportedly has decided to retire from the game.
Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports first reported the news Thursday, Jan. 30:
Sources: Michael Young to retire. Had three good offers, including from #Dodgers, but wanted to be with his family.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 30, 2014
Young offered his thoughts via Dallas Morning News reporter Evan Grant:
“I had a great time in Philadelphia last year and getting to play for my hometown team [the Los Angeles Dodgers) and going to the postseason with them was great,” Young said in interview about retiring. “But I’m a Ranger. I started as a Ranger. I grew up in front of these fans. It was my privilege to play for these fans. I know these fans and they know me. The last game I may have played may not have been in a Rangers uniform, but I’ll always be a Ranger. It’s as simple as that.”
Former GM and current ESPN analyst Jim Bowden offered his thoughts on the news:
On Friday, Ron Washington offered his thoughts about Young via ESPN's Richard Durrett:
#Rangers manager Ron Washington on Michael Young: "He was an ultimate teammate."— Richard Durrett (@espn_durrett) January 31, 2014
#Rangers manager Ron Washington says Michael Young's attitude helped teammates "took them to a level they didn’t think they had."— Richard Durrett (@espn_durrett) January 31, 2014
Durrett added Young's thoughts as well:
#Rangers Michael Young said STL had a great team in 2011: "But we were better. Flat out. I can say that now that I’m retired."— Richard Durrett (@espn_durrett) January 31, 2014
#Rangers Michael Young says his three boys are "the driving reason why my playing days are done."— Richard Durrett (@espn_durrett) January 31, 2014
But Rany Jazayerli of Grantland reminds us that Young didn't quite reach a .300 average for his career:
So I'm guessing the moment of Michael Young's retirement is not the best time to point out his career batting average is actually .29995?— Rany Jazayerli (@jazayerli) January 30, 2014
Young spent 13 years with the Texas Rangers before splitting time in 2013 between the Philadelphia Phillies and Los Angeles Dodgers. In 14 seasons in the big leagues, he finished with 2,375 hits, 185 home runs and 1,030 RBI while being named to seven All-Star Games.
Throughout his career, the versatile player was known for his consistent approach at the plate that helped him achieve a .300 (or .29995) career batting average. He topped this milestone seven times, including in 2005 when he led the American League with a .331 mark.
His strong hitting helped him finish in the top 10 of MVP voting in both 2004 and 2011.
Of course, he also contributed on the defensive end. Young began his career as a second baseman before switching over to shortstop. In 2008, he won the Gold Glove award at short.
Will Michael Young be inducted into the Hall of Fame?
As his career progressed, he started spending time at the corner spots as well. Throughout his career, he played in over 100 games at each infield position.
While Young was never able to win a World Series, he certainly came close. He helped the Rangers win the American League pennant in 2010 and 2011, the latter team coming within one out of a title.
He was a big part of the Rangers' success for over a decade and accomplished plenty both individually and as part of the team.
The 37-year-old veteran will now hang up the cleats after being one of the more consistent players of his generation. Although he was never truly a superstar, his All-Star appearances speak for themselves, as he can look back on a great career.
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