Sports. Honestly. Since 2011

Former Blue Jay, AL MVP Calls It a Career After 13 Seasons

Third baseman Josh Donaldson announced his retirement on Monday during an appearance on The Mayor’s Office with Sean Casey podcast. The 38-year-old had finished out the year with the Milwaukee Brewers after being released by the New York Yankees in August. Unfortunately, Donaldson wasn’t going to be a priority target for teams as he came off the worst season of his career. He hit a robust .142/.225/.434 in 34 games for the Yankees. In Milwaukee, his production was slightly better, managing to hit .169/.290/.390. 13 of his 25 hits for the season were home runs.

“There was a time at the end of the season where I really felt good about where I was at,” Donaldson said. “I wanted to try to give it one more go. But being at home with the family, getting married, today is sad. But, also a happy day for me where I am announcing my retirement from the game I’ve dedicated my entire life around.”

Josh Donaldson Announces Retirement at 38

Donaldson played for teams such as the Oakland Athletics, Cleveland Guardians, Atlanta Braves and Minnesota Twins, in addition to his time with the Yankees and Brewers. His best seasons came during his four-year tenure with the Toronto Blue Jays including a stellar 2015 campaign.  Donaldson hit .297 with a .939 OPS, 41 home runs and 123 RBI en route to his MVP nod. He was also a three-time All-Star from 2014 to 2016 and won two Silver Slugger Awards. He remained a productive player for several more seasons, posting above-average offensive numbers in 2021. However, his production hit a decline following a trade to New York.

From Catcher to The Majors

Donaldson broke into professional baseball as a catcher after the Chicago Cubs took him with the 48th pick in the 2007 MLB Draft. The following summer, Donaldson was among the few that the A’s received in a deal for Rich Harden, succeeding in the farm system. In 2010, he hit .238 in Triple-A, reaching the big leagues for the first time that season. He switched to third base as a primary position in 2012, playing 71 games there in the big leagues. With his combination of plate discipline and power, Donaldson slowly emerged as the “Bringer of Rain”.

MVP Status

It wasn’t until 2013 that the A’s wouldn’t consider trading him. But after the 2014 season, Oakland traded Donaldson to the Blue Jays for four players. It was the first big move that began to cement Alex Anthopoulos’s status as a savvy deal-maker, because the next year, Donaldson won the MVP. He did enjoy a brilliant peak at this point in his career. From 2013 to 2016, he averaged more than seven WAR and 33 home runs per season as he batted .284/.375/.518 (144 OPS+).

For his career, Donaldson batted .261/.358/.489 (129 OPS+) with 279 home runs and 46.8 bWAR. The average third baseman in the Hall of Fame averages 69.4 bWAR.

Main Photo: © Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports


More Posts

Send Us A Message