Veteran catcher Brad Ausmus told Tony Jackson of ESPN Los Angeles on Saturday that he intends to retire at the end of the 2010 season.
“This year is it,” Ausmus said.
The 41-year-old inked a one-year, $850,000 contract with the Dodgers in the offseason and was also given a $1 million mutual option for 2011. That option, of course, will not be exercised.
Ausmus suffered a back injury during the regular season’s opening week and played his first game since April 8 on Saturday night. He’s 2-for-8 on the year with a double and an RBI. Known mostly for his defense, the 17-year veteran collected three Gold Gloves and was named to the 1999 All-Star Game. He holds a .252/.325/.344 career batting line with 80 home runs and 1,567 total hits.
The Yankees fell behind early to the Orioles on Sunday afternoon, a day after dropping both ends of Saturday’s doubleheader. Their game, as did every other game on Sunday with the exception of the Braves-Cardinals doubleheader, started at 3:05 or 3:10 EDT, a change Major League Baseball recently made to create fairness on the final day of the season.
Girardi is not a fan. Per the Associated Press:
It was cloudy at Camden Yards at 3:05 p.m., but late-afternoon games often make it difficult for batters to see pitches.
Girardi said, “Here’s the thing that bothers me: If it’s a sunny day you’re playing in shadows.”
He added, “If it’s the most important game of the year to get in, I don’t think that’s right.”
Understanding the idea is for every team to play at the same time, Girardi said, “Then play all night games.”
One wonders if MLB had scheduled Sunday’s slate of games for the night, if Girardi would have instead complained about batters losing fly balls in the stadium lights. Furthermore, both teams have to play in the same conditions.
Marlins outfielder Ichiro Suzuki was given an opportunity to play a new position in Sunday’s series finale against the Phillies. After the Phillies rallied to take a 6-2 lead in the seventh, the Marlins let Suzuki take the hill in the eighth. And, in news that surprises no one, he was impressive.
Though Suzuki gave up a run on two hits, he flashed a fastball that hit the mid-80’s and a breaking ball with some bite.
Suzuki, who turns 42 years old later this month, is 65 hits of 3,000 in his major league career. The Marlins are interested in bringing him back in 2016.