Andy Pettitte announces retirement (updated)

September 20, 2013

Updated with Pettitte’s announcement

Andy Pettitte announced today that he will retire when the New York Yankees’ season ends.

The pitcher will make his scheduled start Sunday, the day designated “Mariano Rivera Day” at Yankee Stadium in honor of the retiring relief pitcher. Now, with Pettitte’s decision, two of the team’s “core four” will be bowing out together, leaving only Derek Jeter. Rivera has been on a season-long farewell tour, Jeter has rarely played because of injuries this season and Jorge Posada retired after the 2011 season.

“I want to have the opportunity to tip my cap to [fans] during these remaining days and thank them for making my time here with the Yankees so special,” Pettitte, baseball’s winningest postseason player, said in a statement. “I’ve reached the point where I know that I’ve left everything I have out there on that field. The time is right. I’ve exhausted myself, mentally and physically, and that’s exactly how I want to leave this game.

“One of the things I struggled with in making this announcement now was doing anything to take away from Mariano’s day on Sunday. It is his day. He means so much to me and so much to my career that I would just hate to somehow take the attention away from him.”

Pettitte, 41, retired after the 2010 season, sat out 2011 and then signed with the Yankees last year. Like Rivera, he has performed admirably this season. Pettitte has a 10-10 record with a 3.93 ERA. The start Sunday would be Pettitte’s last in New York; he’d likely have one more on the road next week. That would be in Houston, against the only other team for which he has played.

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After spending most of her career in traditional print sports journalism, Cindy began blogging and tweeting, first as NFL/Redskins editor, and, since August 2010, at The Early Lead. She also is the social media editor for Sports.
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Cindy Boren | September 20, 2013