As you may have heard, former Orioles catcher Javy Lopez announced his retirement yesterday. The 37-year-old hadn't played in the major leagues since being released by the Red Sox in September 2006. After sitting out all of last season, he decided to give it one last try, working out through the winter and convincing the Braves to invite him to Spring Training. Obviously things didn't work out the way that Javy had hoped; his .188 batting average this spring wasn't nearly enough to overcome a logjam behind the plate. But in a way, he got to go out on his own terms. Rather than ending things with an unceremonious dumping at the hands of the Rockies (as was the case in 2007), he got to return to the team that first signed him at the age of seventeen two decades ago. When the Braves let him know that he would have to begin the season in the minor leagues, he walked away with no regrets knowing that he had done his best. A career .287 average and 260 home runs are a pretty good legacy. He won a World Series ring with Atlanta in 1995, and set a record with 42 home runs as a catcher in 2003.
Ride off into the sunset, Javy. You've earned it.