I’m assuming he held the news a day so’s not to steal the thunder of the Hall of Famers, but journeyman infielder John McDonald has announced his retirement.
McDonald played for eight teams over a 16-year major league career [checks Baseball-Reference.com. Totally does a double take, realizing that, yes, McDonald was a 16-year big leaguer]. He lasted that long because, for most of his career, he was a downright spiffy defensive shortstop who could handle second, third and even play some outfield. There are a lot of guys who profile as utilitymen. Not many stick around as long as McDonald did. Keeping him from starting was a pretty poor bat, but nobody’s perfect.
So, so long, former Indian, Blue Jay, Diamondback, Pirate, Phillie, Red Sock, Angel and Tiger! Enjoy retirement.
Indians outfielder Michael Brantley suffered a mild concussion on Monday evening when he banged his head and neck on the knee of Angels infielder John McDonald while trying to break up a doubleplay.
But he is expected to avoid the disabled list.
Indians manager Terry Francona told MLB.com’s Jordan Bastian on Wednesday that Brantley has been “passing tests each day” and could return to the starting lineup Saturday night against the Tigers. Brantley is expected to go through a workout Thursday to determine whether he’s fully symptom-free.
The 27-year-old has been a breakout star in the early going this season, boasting a .323/.391/.519 batting line with 11 home runs and 46 RBI in 69 games. Brantley has also tallied nine stolen bases in nine attempts.
John McDonald, who bounced around with four different teams last season, has signed a minor-league deal with the Angels. Rob Bradford of WEEI.com reports that he’ll get a spring training invitation.
For years McDonald was a great enough defensive shortstop to offset his horrendous offense, or at least offset it enough to be a reasonable utility infielder. But now at age 39 it’s not clear if his glove is all that special any longer.
He hit .116 in 51 games last year and is a .235 career hitter with a .601 OPS.