Another fixture of the San Francisco Giants’ run of three titles over five years is hanging it up.
Javier Lopez, the left-handed specialist, announced he was calling it a career at the age of 39 on Wednesday.
“More than anything, it’s just time,” Lopez told Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports. “It’s a young man’s game. Although I think I can compete, it’s getting harder and harder to get ready for spring.”
Lopez was a clubhouse favorite, but struggled last season, compiling 4.05 earned run average over 26.2 innings pitched.
He was an unsigned free agent with reportedly few options to continue his career.
Lopez’s best season came in 2010, when the Pittsburgh Pirates traded him to San Francisco for Joe Martinez and John Bowker. In 19 regular-season innings, he allowed 13 base runners and no home runs. Then, in the postseason, he allowed just one run over nine appearances.
“The countless conversations, the seeking of advice and the right off the plane dinners and beers are just a few of the things I’m personally going to miss,” George Kontos posted on Instagram. “Thanks for everything Big Jav, the game is really losing a great one.”
When I first got called up to the Giants in 2012, my locker was put right next to Javi Lopez's. Over the next 5 seasons, every day I'd walk into the clubhouse there he was right next to me. The countless conversations, the seeking of advice and the right off the plane dinners and beers are just a few of the things I'm personally going to miss. Thanks for everything Big Jav, the game is really losing a great one. I hope retirement treats you, Renee and the kids even better than 4 rings!! #NightTrain49 #ForeverGiant #ForeverCoastin'
He retires a four-time World Series champ after winning a title with the Boston Red Sox in 2007.
Brian Wilson eyes return
As one World Series hero leaves the game, another is looking to get back into it.
Former Giants closer Brian Wilson told Tim Brown of Yahoo that he wants to tryout as a knuckleballer.
“I can already see myself out there,” Wilson said in the story, “throwing up some waffles.”