Friday, February 4, 2011

Farewell, Andy Pettitte

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Andy Pettitte has ridden off into the sunset.

Today, the Yankee great will officially announce his retirement and walk away from another guaranteed 1-year deal from the Bronx Bombers. For the last couple of years Pettitte and the Yankees have been working on a year-by-year basis due to Pettitte not being sure if he should continue playing or retire. I guess this time around his mind is made up and he's definitely walking away.

Pettitte had a great career and deserves to walk away on his own terms. He finishes with an impressive 240-138 record, with 2251 strikeouts and a career 3.88 ERA. More impressively, Pettitte has 5 World Series championship rings (1996, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2009) and a major league-record 19-10 record in the playoffs. Overall he appeared in 8 World Series, 7 with the Yankees and 1 with the Houston Astros.

As with all other border-line players who retire, the debate will begin as to whether or not Pettitte is Hall of Fame worthy. His solid regular season numbers and his great post-season accomplishments surely lean toward saying yes and had he played in a different era he most likely would be in the Hall of Fame. But unfortunately his admission to using HGH and his involvement in the Roger Clemens mess makes it highly unlikely that he'll get elected. As we have seen in the past 5 years, the BBWAA voters have taken a tough stance on any player within "6 degrees of separation" from the steroids scandal. Just ask poor Jeff Bagwell.

All in all, Pettitte was a great player, a great role model and a great champion. Like I said, he deserves to leave on his own terms, รก la Mike Mussina and he will be sorely missed in the Yankees rotation.

Good luck in your next endeavor, Andy.

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